|7:10AM, May 29. The rules say...|
|...that treks start at the top of the driveway, Mina Ave.|
|The bike shuttle.
A free service that takes bikes through the Massey Tunnel on the way from the ferry to Vancouver airport
famous Green Lane Overpass,
you make it to here, you're on your way.
first night was at Royal Tunbridge Wells, where I "took
the waters". No I didn't;
what a liar. I "took the waters" at Bath two years ago,
and it tasted like bathwater.
Royal Tunbridge Wells is about 50 km east of Gatwick. My first night. In the late 1700's - early 1800's it was, like Bath, a resort/spa for the aristocrats.
example of riding conditions on English roads.
You're probably wondering "wot this lot is about". This is my Folkstone pit crew.
got a flat ( her second one in less than 24 hrs, so I didn't have a
spare... thorns!!!) Rode carefully
along, hoping to get to a bike store soon. The flat tire hopped
out and wrapped itself around the axle: what a mess.
the Dover P&O ferry at 5:00
Sheep at Vimy Ridge, grazing amid the unexploded bombs.
view of the memorial. It was very moving... I've been to the D-Day beaches
and to Dieppe, but here it's different.
The whole countryside is spotted with graveyards.. English, French. German, Canadian, Australian. What a waste.
whom I met in Arras. He works at the Vimy memorial doing landscaping.
He's french but worked for several years in Canada. As you can see, he's a Canada fan.
my canadian friends whom our city loves, and France as well, I wish a
fine journey and beautiful memories of France.
André, a friend of Canada who loves it from the bottom of his heart."
of many military cemeteries in eastern France. This one is British.
The French ones are called 'necropoles'; cities of the dead.
|LRT in Valenciennes|
|This is Jean Marc Perot, who flagged me down in Berlaimont, south of Valenciennes. Had a good long talk in french. He says he's related to Ross Perot.|
The view from the cemetery above Gernelle.
This was on the long route I took through the Ardenne hills between Charleville and Sedan
me know if you can read this. It might be a bit squinty. Maybe you
need new glasses. My daily entry for Thursday June 7. Charleville to
I did my journal every day while I waited for my dinner. Also wrote postcards. Tonnes of them.
|This looks like the laziest possible holiday. Three kph through the fields in the Meuse.|
|Dux in the Meuse at Dun-sur-Meuse|
|I took some time to watch a dutch canal yacht going through one of the Meuse locks, north of Verdun|
|It took about 25 minutes.|
Scenery at Fort de Vaux,
Verdun was one of the focal points of WWI. After loosing the Franco-Prussian war in 1871, the french fortified Verdun as their new bulwark against Germany.
The town is encircled by hilltop fortifications. This is where Marshall Petain said
" On ne passe pas"...
"They shall not pass"
They almost did pass, but both sides lost about 100,000 soldiers each over a period of 8 months.
Fort de Vaux is now in the quiet woods on a hilltop above the town. The woods are out of bounds because of unexploded shells.
Big brother and his two little sisters.
Fishing from the second storey balcony
Verdun is a 'little Venice', a network of small
canals that adjoin the Meuse.
In the past they were important for commerce.
The fancy gentrified houses that line the canals
were once all warehouses and factories.
In Merogignian times (AD 600 to 800), Verdun is said to
have been the slave trade hub of Europe.
There was a big demand around the Mediterranean world for
Nordic (blond) house slaves.
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