On my way towards Germany I headed eastward and stopped in Courtenay for a coffee with croissant. What else?
To be honest, I just looked for a lunch break during driving and found Troyes, which I never heard of anyway. What a pleasant surprise again to discover this charming city.
From the church to the market.
I love symmetry.
And water features.
I moved on to Strasbourg and searched long for parking or camping. Found the camping ground but they were fully booked and rather inflexible. They could have allowed me to wait whether everybody booked really comes. They did not. Not recommendable.
So I carried on to Germany and stopped at an Autobahn Fuel Station.
I did not mention in yesterday’s report that I stopped at a highway fuel station for the night. I headed east again towards Germany and Austria.
55 km before Orleans I found Schloss Châteaudun. What a beauty.
In Orleans I parked at the river Loire opposite the city and rode my bike to town.
A bit further up is already an image oft this hotel and court yard. Now, one hour later it was used for a celebration of the French National Holiday. They had representatives from the US Army around in their original uniforms. Also vehicles were on show from 1945.
One of the vehicles was a Dodge troop transporter which I had driven in my military training in 1979. Can you believe that? It was not a question that I could take a seat and get photographed by the US Army.
About 15 km “behind” Orleans was Jargeau, which had a small parking lot for motor homes. Quite quaint views.
Who has not heard of Mont St Michel? I did and it was on my bucket list for a long time. Today was the day.
The camping site was near, so I took the bike once more and left it before the long bridge and mingled with the crowd. Medieval through and through the place moves you back in time automatically. Everything has style and charm and quality.
I was blessed by being able to attend the end of a church service, where the nuns sang as a small choir with a mystical sound in that high cathedral.
Wandering from level to level one has views over the Channel or inland or is drawn into court yards and chambers.
It is such a center of positive energy that I did not want to leave on the same day. On the other hand my time came slowly to an end and I carried on east bound to Rennes.
My blessings did not seize. Rennes offers stylish architectures and splendid restaurants, pubs and cafes.
This would be special day. I visited good friends from long long back at their country cottage near Oxford. And later on I drove to Stone Henge in the Salisbury Planes. It should be no secret that I am mad about the Neolithic Sites.
The mystery of this center of energy is still under investigation. Austrian scientists are leading the wider area research from an helicopter using Radar and Sonar technology. They discovered a huge far reaching structure of stones and paths and type of canals. For me the presence of Stone Henge is nothing short of the Pyramids of Egypt or Macchu Picchu in Peru.
After that intense visit where I moved backwards and forwards in time in my imagination (-> time-travel.net), I carried on to Pool to cross over the Channel tomorrow to France.
For France I had in mind the Normandie and Bretagne, but detailed targets. I was lucky enough to get recommendations and hints from friends and neighbors. One would be “Carnac” with many large fields with hundreds of Menhirs. Equally intriguing.
As I parked very near to the ALDI shop, what sounds more attractive than fresh croissants for breakfast? What a treat in the morning.
Moving back south with just a few short stops. Time for better weather all together.
Some roads had unstable shoulders on the side of the road. As I sat in a left hand driven car and had to drive on the left side of the road, judgement to oncoming motor home traffic was tough at times. It resulted in 4 hits on one Sunday. And one to the four broke the right outer mirror. I just could fix it with cable strips not to loose it completely.
I choose Morecambe for the stop over by chance because it got late and I got tired. Found parking quickly in a side road of a shopping complex and walked to the festival at the sea side.
The idea was to cycle to the northern side of Skye and visit some points if interest. One was the “Old Man of Storr“. A look out of the motor home showed some clouds in the background, but all in all it was very promising.
But just after one Kilometer of cycling the background came strongly to the foreground and I had to put on the rain jacket. I only made it to the first attraction, Old Man of Storr. There were about 15 – 20 people on the way up and down. With a group of younger guys I made it to quite close to the stone. But the last bit was very steep and slippery and there was fog and a gail force storm which almost blew us off the socks. The clouds were so dense, we only saw a ghostly image of it. Perseverance is also a virtue.
In rain and storm I cycled back and suffered a bit. But only the tough survive. In the motor home I quickly changed to warm clothing and put the wet ones onto drying ropes.
All set to drive around the island on four wheels. Found the “Kilt Rock & Mealt Falls Viewpoint” on route.
Duntulm Castle was a bit lost in the distance, but one could imagine it interesting in different weather.
Other travelers persevered on two wheels and I felt a little weak. My excuse was afterwards, I did not have the perfect outfit for these conditions. And it was true. The way to Fort Williams led over the bridge around lochs and lakes. I found parking and a pub for dinner. All well.