Burgundy to Budapest. Day 1 proper. Nevers to Paray Le Monial

So today we (Le Tank) and I got down to the proper job of cycling. Plan was to, in the main, take the EV 6 all the way from Nevers to Paray LM.  Set off at 8 and made good time Along the canal lateral a Loire.

Not long after we set off, I got talking to Janet and Stephan (picture below) – they are doing the same journey as I am, except all at once!! Chapeau to them. They set off from St Brevin 8 days ago – so are a making a good fist of it so far.

Janet and Stephan

They were lovely, but slightly weird. This made me think that possibly I was the same, old, sort of lovely, but odd! Maybe I am. In any case we chatted and pedalled for a bit and then, as I am not old, I sped off. 5 mins later they overtook me!! Bloody French pensioners!

First stop today was in Decize – where, as was the formula the last time I did this, bought a baguette with frontage and jambon, and an eclair! That would be my fuel until lunch.

Me in front of something in Decize.
Me in front of something in Decize.
the picture was take by an Australian couple – fair dinkum mate. Actually there are quite a lot of antipodeans and Americans here – not cycling, but barging about on the canals.

image

This one was flying the Stars and Stripes!

After Decize things got a bit tricky…the day became a day of learning. And as the day progressed I learned the following:

  •  French nature can kill you.
  • I do not suffer hayfever at home – but here I am absolutely dying!! It’s the trees apparently! And it appears I am very allergic – pharmacy tomorrow.
  • Ive seen more wild snakes here than I did the entire time I was travelling round India! Ok, so I’ve seen one, and it was dead on the road, clearly squashed by a car (good) but it was big and that is not good – I feel I am allergic to that also.
  • Finally my theory that I am impervious to the sun is  wrong – I am badly burned!! Idiot!! Pharmacy tomorrow.

Rising above all of his danger I pedalled on. And after 60 miles or so had made it to Digoin. A place of relative importance, for me anyway, as it is here we say imagegoodbye to the Loire and hello to the Canal de Centre.

The Loire heads off
The Loire heads off
The next 2 days will be on the canal – then it’s the doubs river for a bit.

Tonights the first night under canvass – not something I love, but a financial necessity. Fingers crossed for a decent kip.

Here’s some other randomness of the day.

Late Lunch Chez Lilly
Late Lunch Chez Lilly

Another Pont de Canal. When you've seen one...
Another Pont de Canal. When you’ve seen one…

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