Cinq mille plus

Yesterday, I bushwhacked into a space near a giant lake. The tree branches above me made a wonderful arched
canopy and the ivy vines around me made a soft bed. I passed out almost immediatly, but my spot was so secluded, there wasn’t a chance of anyone ever seeing me. I could have stayed for days…

They surely do not make them like this anymore:

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(Notre-Dame de Reims)

Which means, I’m in Reims. Sorry, I couldn’t let myself be lost for long.

Here’s the Marc Chagall Stain Glass, put in, in 1970-something:

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Chagall was Jewish. His wife was a master stain glass maker. Their son still lives in Reims (I think) and carries on the tradition.

I very strange thing happened on my return to France. This week is the last full week of August, I guess. Children start school soon, the sun is setting every so earlier and there’s a briskness in the air. And, France is chilling out. I go places and it’s not overrun with tourists. The ones that are there are polite and quiet.

I can navigate a Sueprmarche and not want to have blood spill.

My French, although still baaaad is better than before. I can make up spontaneous sentences, instead of relying on Traveling French. I can almost have a conversation. My spirits are high.

And, I only have one or two full days of riding left and I’m in Paris, where I play tourist for a couple days, then an iron rocket-powered eagle whisks me away to the middle of North America, on the other side of the world. Sad times, really.

This little guy:

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Started the change for me. He begged for a crumb from my breakfast, instead of ignoring me, or growling at me. The cafe was playing a French dubbed version of Before Sunset, which I found strangely bizarre:

Before Sunset, dubbed in French, playing at the cafe

France is a very strange country – I’m sure of that. The fascists aren’t too worried about being plain about things:

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At least they don’t say one thing and do another, but it’s still incredulous that this party still exists.

So, I hang my hat up in Reims tonight. Finding my way out of the city at night doesn’t particularly sound interesting, as it was a bit of hell getting in (lots of highways almost entered into), so I go a room in a traveler’s hotel, that’s just about big enough for the twin bed and my outstretched arms to fit. The sink and toilet are in the shower (no, really), but they will all be utilized well.

Reims has a pedestrian center filled with British-Style pubs and I haven’t a clue what that’s all about. So, I’m going to plan my route into Paris and then maybe see if I can’t get an honest pint.

Cheers,

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