Day 8 A day of two halves

We slept soundly in our very quiet abode, the only sounds were the next-door church bell ringing and being woken by the cock crowing. Alix had breakfast ready in the garden – another gorgeous meal of freshly squeezed orange juice, cereal with strawberries and home-made yogurt, scrambled eggs, fresh breads and croissants with a selection of honeys, (including one from chestnut flowers Joseph) and her own home-made jams. It’s just as well that we had a day’s cycling ahead!

Alix loves Ireland and visits regularly. She has taken our address to now visit Sligo – I would not be at all surprised to see her. The other guests who were staying were two very nice French men from Paris and a French man with his Brazilian wife, his son of about seven with a friend, The latter now live in Germany and gave us their contact details if we run into any problems cycling through Germany.

We set off having thoroughly enjoyed our stay in Savennières.

This morning our plan was to cycle 92km to our accommodation booked in Saint Patrice.

In the morning after three hours cycling we had only covered 37km. We can normally cycle about 20-22km per hour on flat ground. The fist problem was that the Véloroute was very busy with many joggers and cyclists, (probably due to it being Sunday). Secondly we lost the Véloroute signs and ended up in the middle of Angers, though it was good to see some of the sights there.

I noted a street named after the famous French singer.

The third reason for our slow progress in the morning was that in our effort to rejoin the Véloroute we encountered some very difficult terrain. At one stage I even fell off the bike trying to avoid a bunch of nettles, though landed safely on soft ground.

Slightly frustrated with progress and with google maps telling us we still had 60km to our accommodation for the night, we stopped for lunch. Over lunch we decided to take advantage of the French people’s way of taking Sundays/holidays seriously – to chance going back to the main road i.e. that there wouldn’t be too much traffic nor lorries given today was Sunday. We gambled correctly, having covered 37km in three hours in the morning, we covered the remainder in the same time in the afternoon. The Strava app told us that we ended up cycling 102km.

In the afternoon, we saw people going to their vote centre for the French Parliamentary elections held today, Sunday. Macron’s party is expected to do well.

Once again it was so lovely to see our B&B for the night in Saint Patrice, again in the middle of the country. When we booked, Madame said that she would not be cooking tonight and there was no restaurant open within walking distance, but that she would drive us to and collect us from a nearby restaurant.

We enjoyed a good dinner after today’s long cycle!

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