Courant de Mimizan to Angoulême
Woke up in the Pension pretty early after a good night’s sleep. Bingo opens up the French doors and says ‘lovely smell’, someone burning pine, think that might be the forest fires I say.
Sure enough there were smoke clouds and an eery feel to the atmosphere. But in true ‘nothing can go wrong’ fashion off we went, heading North West, basically straight for one of the big fires, on we pushed. Even passed a couple of touring bikes going the other way, they tried to tell us something, but Aylesham boys know better, well sometimes they do.
After around 20 miles we came across the 1st sign and the cycle lane closed off, little chat get on the road and carry on. Against a steady stream of tourist traffic going the other way. We stopped for a pan-de-choc, coffee and soft drink, then it suddenly dawned on us, we are in the middle of 2 massive fires, going North was not an option, the way ahead was East, then see if we could go North. Finally came to the conclusion that we either get off the bikes voluntaryily or be ordered off. Never seen so many fire engines on the road.
We carried on then Bingo spotted an SNCF railway station, let’s give it a go, bloke on the station was brilliant, he said bikes go free, but trains are delayed due to forest fires and heat.
So folks that’s the ride over for today, 35miles that’s all and 15 of them in the wrong direction! Needs must, train it is then.
Respect for all the Firefighters and emergency services putting their lives at risk, we are only a couple of old gits on a bike.
Replan then set off again.
[They took the train to Bordeaux and after some refreshments another train to Angoulême to spend the night. They’ll resume riding tomorrow – Ed]
In more uplifting news the collection smashed through £6000 barrier. Massive thanks from all the team for the contributions so far. Thinking of you Kobi! Onwards and upwards.
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