Tuesday, 24 June 2014

The bike with no chains.

Hired a bike as soon as I arrived here on Sunday. From the start, I thought it had a funny action. It wasn't until yesterday that I noticed that the pedals do not seem to be connected to any chains - no idea how it works.



For the last two evenings, my habit has been to take the bike out before dinner and cycle up a long, steep hill across from the entrance to the campsite here at St Georges de Didonne. The road is long and dark, lined by thick trees on both sides and it heads inland away from the sea.

It's chest crushing work pedalling to the top without getting off to walk. But what a reward when one reaches the summit. Suddenly one leaves the darkness of the trees and is faced with a slice of rural France laid out before one on this bright, sunny, green  plateau. One could be anywhere. It has an unreal feel, dreamlike. One feels invisible as if one has entered a parallel universe or a story book.



Can't wait to get back up there this evening.

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Last night's dinner:

Chicken in tomato sauce and rice.

The full set up.

Close up of table cloth.
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After dinner, another amazing sunset.





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Currently reading:


This is a very encouraging book for me because it is by a musician that I have a lot of respect for who wanted desperately to play a guitar and against all the odds - no encouragement from anyone; no talent; no musical knowledge etc - did so by dint of sheer determination and practice, practice, practice.

She was the guitarist for the unique 70s band, "The Slits".


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Drumming practice update:

Up early this morning and took my drum down to the bottom of the cliff face again.

View from the drum
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Royan:

Visited my favourite church building anywhere, the concrete colossus which is Notre Dame, Royan.

It dominates everywhere in Royan.

Passed this ancient but immaculate Austin Metro as I walked towards the church.

What a monster.

Couldn't fit it all in the picture.

So took a diagonal shot.

Massive inside too.







A double funeral was about to be held and these are the two hearses; different from those in the UK.

Coffee and a read afterwards

Organ grinder across the road.




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