Saturday, October 11, 2008

Day 382: Lunel to Beziers

Time: 5:35
Distance: 103.4 km
Avg Speed: 18.8 kph
Terrain: Flat
Location: N 43˚ 19’ 45.5”, E 03˚ 17’ 18.0”

I had ideas for all kinds of titles today, but we saw and encountered so many different things it was hard to sum up. We headed out with some warm temps and our friendly little tail wind pushing us along. The going was really straight forward as we got out of Lunel and tried to stay south of Montpellier. We have gotten a little weird about staying out side of cities, so much in fact that we spent today in circuitous avoidance of them. They seem to suck us in and spit us out only after they have had their way with us. Right out of town today we started hearing gun shots coming from the fields. This was a first for us in France, and as much as I can figure it was the first day of dove season. We rode a little ways and had to take a roadside pitstop. I took care of my business and right as Leslie was taking care of hers a little old farmer came strolling out of nowhere with a little satchel and an ancient double barrel shotgun. So much for privacy on the side of the road. We got back underway and saw our first Tour de France street art. If you have watched the Tour you will have noticed that fans paint all over the roads with drawings and sayings. Today we rode over a giant bicycle painted across both lanes of traffic. As soon as we saw it, we both new what it was. It was a little faded, but pretty neat nonetheless. We had a little over an hour under our belts when we got to a big shopping area in a suburb of Montpellier. We were low on cooking gas and I had seen some signs for sporting goods stores. We turned into the first parking lot and came face to face with our friend: McDonald’s. It was still early so we stepped right up and got a petit dejeuner of an Egg McMuffin and a Coke. Egg McMuffin is the same in English as it is in French. After snarfing some calories we hit all the sports stores and the mall and came up empty handed. Our next goal was to get to the coast. Remember, I said circuitous. We made good time and arrived in the port town of Sete. We finally made it to the Mediterranean and were greeted by clear skies, blue water and boats, boats and more boats. From little dinghies, to barges to giant cruise ships. It was a hopping little place, with the traffic to prove it. We ate lunch here before setting off across a 13km narrow sand spit. We had a nice bike path for half of it, the other half we shared with cars and RV’s. It was nice to have those sparkling blue waters to our left the whole way. After the spit we saw that we had another 32km to our desired destination for the night. It was time to put our heads down, but not until we had another Coke and some refills on our water. We also got sucked into cooking gas shopping some more. No Dice. We did make it with daylight to spare and now are eating everything in the food bag. Hopefully the stores are open on Sunday.
Au revoir

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