Last night was one of the the three meals Neil and Nat prepared for us during the trip. We teased Neil what a manly Weber Grill he had!!
emJay pinched in and helped with the bread . . .
. . . delicious marinated chicken shish ka bobs . . .
. . . as we sat down the food just kept coming . . .
. . . . fresh fruit salad. shish ka bobs, potatoes with crème freshe, LOTS of wine. . .
. . . and for dessert . . . a Paiova meringue with LOTS of chocolate and poached pears.
Nat, Jamie, Lucy and Neil. A GREAT family and it has really been fun hanging out with them!!!
Soon it was morning and time to ride. Neil has developed a great ride system with many alternatives. Besides the GPS routes there are also laminated cards to take along telling you everything about the route . . .
. . .including recommendations on where to stop, what to see and most importantly . . . where to eat lunch!!!!!
Today the herd would break into two groups. A shorter ride and a long one. Local artists . . .
. . . adding local color. LOTS of it!!!!
We rode by the apple trees that had been covered yesterday . . . today they were opened . . .
. . . and being mechanically picked.
The first part of the ride was through a large orchard area with lots if irrigation . . .
Love the signage in the rural areas, especially the train crossings . . . Choo-Choo!
Many of the trees were sprayed with some kind of blue sulphate to prevent insect and disease damage.
There were also lots of these hot houses along the way that are used to start tomatoes early in the season . . .
oh , , , and the French are into kale too!!!!
there was either a reroute of this irrigation ditch or someone forgot to pay their water bill!!!!
Those of us on the longer route went around the mountain today and had several climbs. . . we soon left the valley floor and started climbing . . .
. . . . fun to watch the sheep along the way. The lambs are very busy . . .
. . . and there were horses along the way too out for a morning walk.
. . .we rolled though several small villages and this one had a salon where you could get the nationally recognized ‘French Girl Cut’.
. . . Greg, its cheap here . . . no $50 haircuts!!!!
around the mountain . . . .
, , , ,circuses may he passé in the US, with the Ringling Brother’s recently shutting down, but they still seem to be popular in FR.
We stay primarily on small farm lanes during the day but once in a while need to pop out onto busier roads used as connectors . . .
. . . this one leading us to Lorimarc, another one of the most beautiful villages in southern France!!!
. . . beautiful!!!!!
. . . with a great chateau . . .
. . . and fun fountains. Talk about morning breath!!!
We stopped for a nice lunch where there was great people watching . . . including ‘’’man scarves.!!!!
. . . the local kitty stopped by to say hi and to get a handout.
Johnny had a salad . . .
Pam had the pasta . . .
Terry had the blood sausage and I had an omelet . . . all on a perfect day, in a perfect setting!!!!
nice sights as we walked around town and back to our bike for the climb up to Menarbes . . .
, , , on the ay to our bikes I saw these two rigs. Déjà vu. Would have like to have talked to them but couldn’t figure out who the riders were.
lets head up the mountain. . . .
oh yeah . . .
there were several switchbacks , , ,
but after a hearty lunch, it was not a problem!!!
. . . and of course more Kodak moments!!!!
mmmm . . . . wonder if they have any dessert ??????
We stopped at a restaurant overlooking the lower part of the town . . .
. . . where I had to poke my nose into the kitchen . . .
. . . admiring their wood fired pizza oven . . . which sounded good . . .
. . . but I settled for a nice little tiramisu. . . .YUMM!!!
. . . on the way own we looked across the hillside and the was LaCoste, an ancient village now mostly owned by Pierre Cardin, the clothes designer. A former owner was . . . the Marquis de Sade!!!!!
There was construction on the way back to Coustelett and this one is for Charlie. Not a Caterpillar, in fact I have never heard of this brand!!!!