Ride The Flavour (en)

Day Four – 95 km

May. 7th | 0 comments

Tuesday 23rd April 2013. From Bordeaux to Fourques sur Garonne.

We leave Bordeaux by following the northern bank of the Garonne, on a bicycle lane at first, then on a secondary road. Considerable change: the countryside now welcomes few hills and finally offers us the soft relief that we were waiting for until then. Vineyards, however, are unchanging and keep coming out turn after turn… But wait, don’t you see these white flowers? Yes, this is it, cherry-plum trees!… It would seem that other fruit trees, annoyed by such a dullness, finally decided to put their two cents in the landscape… And it is not to displease us!

We ride sometimes on roads, sometimes on narrow paths. We have to move forward, but leaving the asphalt to find earth and pebbles is a pleasure to which we are willing to succumb. We do not travel by bike to keep cars company!

We cross Cadillac, then Langon and, in early afternoon, we arrive at Castets-en-Dorthe. The “canal along the Garonne” opens in front of us, perfectly rectilinear. Its banks were turned into a bicycle lane and are now car-free… and horse-free, which is pretty funny since it used to be towpath!

Just before Cadillac, we cross Rions (which means “let’s laugh” in French)… I’ve got you, you’ve got me by the chin… 😉


We start riding along the canal: we will follow its banks for the last 200 km, up to our destination, Toulouse! There is hardly anybody. Only the birdsongs remind us that our hearing is intact. The peace which bathes the atmosphere around calms us down and makes us forget the zooming sounds of  the road.

Le canal de la Garonne !

A boat passing a lock

Passage d'un bateau dans une écluse

We ride all day long with the electric assistance level 1. After the 80th km, the assistance turns offs, our batteries are empty. Precious information as for the autonomy of the batteries. Even though we ride 15 km more and arrive at Fourques sur the Garonne around 7 pm. We begin to look for somewhere to plug our batteries, but our wheels, guided by our lucky star (once again!), find much more that a plug. They find the hospitality of a family.

We fisrt meet Joseph, who directly shows us where to plug our batteries. But, before we installed our multi-socket, he wants to tell his wife. He explains with malice: “I am the boss, but she is the manageress”. We hardly stop laughing that we learn that his wife is called Marie. Joseph and Marie. Second burst of laughter! Marie joins us and does not hesitate even one second before she gives the green light. A quiet serenity isses from this couple and makes us comfortable  from the first minutes after we met.

« And where do you sleep? You can pitch your tent in the garden if you want.»

10 minutes later, our tent is pitched and, as we are filling our flask in their house…

« Would you have an aperitif ? »

10 minutes later, we set up a table outside with Joseph and Marie brings a bottle of vanilla flavoured-rhum, that she has made herself. Their daughter Isabelle and her son Mattéo join us, and that is how we get to know the three generations of this family. We talk during more than one hour as if, to agree with the lazy speed of the canal, the thread of time had slowed down. Then, while the last glows disappear in the twilight, we get back to our own kichens, glad that we met so fortuitously. But before we leave each other, we make an appointment: tomorrow, we will have breakfast together…

He says he is a “camera enthousiast”, his wife and daughter rather say he is narcissistic, here is Joseph! Thanks a lot!

Joseph, notre hôte si généreux

Travel notes: it has been 3 evenings in a row that we have been offered hospitality. Each time, we have drank with our hosts.  However pleasant it is, let’s hope that it will not happen everyday during our world tour… otherwise, we may have to plan a detox treatment after we get back !


Day four

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