Once I left Chaillvette and on the way to Bordeaux, the vegetation changes gradually, from oyster farm to vineyard. This is near the coastal town Royan along the river.
The coastal scenery in Royan is very pretty. After Royan, I rode along the river and prepared to spend a night in Blaye, where Samuel’s friend Adrien could host me a night.
Huge pieces of vineyard always catch my attention. Now it is autumn, all the grapes have been harvested and fermenting into wine. The plants hibernate through the winter and start growing when the spring energy comes! The golden yellow leaves dye the whole scenery into an oil painting.
At one point, my whole attention was soaked by the panoramic view, suddenly my bike ran into the rim of the road. I pressed the break but already too late. My left knee and left palm smashed on the ground, this was the first injury ever since I started cycling in New Zealand. It was a silly mistake and there was no point to be mad about it.
After the fall, I still had 36km to ride until Blaye. Everytime when I stopped, the first few steps to start again were so painful, but after I kept the right pace, the pain was tolerable. I was 100% sure that it was only a superficial wound, no fracture, no tendon injury, otherwise I couldn’t make that 36km in 3 hours.
Once I arrive Adrien’s place, the first thing to do was to check how the wound looked like. The one on my knee looked horrible, where the one on the palm was fine. I cleaned with warm water and bethadine. Last week Fabien and Claire gave me a packet of “Green medicinal clay” which is supposed to help healing wounds. I am going to give it a try, after drying up, I sprinkled the clay powder on top of the wounds and covered them with plaster tapes.
Adrien works in a nuclear power plant, he explained me quite a lot of interesting facts about using nuclear power. Their neighbour Germany shut down all the nuclear station after the Fukushima explosion because of safety and environmental reasons, but they buy nuclear energy from France, very contradicting! The main issue about nuclear energy is the waste disposal, even though they cover with thick layers of lead or other metals and bury in the ground, the nuclear waste is still contaminating the soil or maybe water. We don’t know. We hope there won’t be any more explosion involving nuclear plants in the world ever.
The next day I had 51km to go to Bordeaux, although my knee still hurt, I just couldn’t wait and alter all my upcoming schedules. Mostly it just hurt during the first few pedals when I mount on the bike, after I got used to the feeling, the pain became numb. If I didn’t remind myself there was a wound, the pain was insignificant.
The road leading to Bordeaux is flat and gorgeous, but this time I paid extra attention not to fall again. This gigantic wine bottle explained everything!
Sunset at the bridge towards Bordeaux town center. There are quite a number of people cycling in Bordeaux!
I arrived Sylvain and Orely’s place in the evening, immediately welcomed by their cute little daughter.
I spent 2 nights with them, and tried another French cuisine called Tartiflette, which you put sliced potato and ham mince in layers, then put a special type of cheese named Reblochon on top. Baked in oven for 30mins and it is done. Such an easy dish to prepare and it is tasty! I suppose you can put other vegetables or meat in the layers.
Bordeaux is not all about wine, there are lots more to offer in town. Undoubtedly the cathedral is one of the highlights.
Victory Square gathers a lot of people and plenty of cafe and restaurant surrounding the area.
A classical clock tower.
The mirror of water is gorgeous in the evening.
Unfortunately, almost every museum in Bordeaux you have to pay, so I didn’t visit any one. Wander around both sides of the river was enough for a day, the northern side got a newly developed artistic area which is worthy to have a look.
At the end, I didn’t taste any Bordeaux wine, what a shame! Haha….
Chaillvette to Bordeaux 135km