We are on the train today, from St. Emilion to Nimes, to start our exploration of Provence. Half way along the route, we are stopped in Toulouse because, further along the route, a train bridge over a river is stuck open. We hear rumors of how long it will take to fix. Perhaps, it will take up to six hours. The train conductor is not very helpful. He speaks little English and suggests, mimicking the motion, that we could ride our bikes instead of waiting for the train.
Like most kids growing up in the 60s, I loved to ride my bike. It was the freedom to move. To travel unencumbered in the world. To see new places, away from the watchful eyes of our parents.
The single most important thing to bear in mind when packing for a self-supported cycling trip is that whatever you pack, you must pedal!
Why this trip? Why France? Why not some English-speaking nation, like England or Ireland that offer some equally wonderful riding experiences without the confusion of French?