Rain. Thunderstorms. Architecture. History.
Leaving the campsite about 20 miles south of Rennes the weather wasn’t too bad. A little grey and drizzly. It got worse. Much worse. Drizzle turned to rain, rain to thunderstorms. Lightening cracking above my head, rumbling thunder and torrential downpours.
When the rain sets in like this on a trip you have a few options. If it’s like that in the morning when you set out then my choice is to lie up for the day and wait it out. On this occasion I was already rolling and just donned the wet weather gear and pushed on. Having made that call it got really bad. So bad that lightening was cracking above my head and the waterproofs were starting to be pushed beyond their water stopping abilities. I made a decision; Googling the nearest train station I found one about 15 miles away and started to head for it, planning on jumping aboard a train to Nantes.
About half way there the weather began to clear. My legs were feeling good – plenty of juice in the tank, so I reverted to my original plan and rode all the way into Nantes, checking in at a hotel in good time to. Shower and head out for something to eat.
After a pint in “The Stupid Dog” I found a cute little bistro with a limited menu just off the tourist trap and popped in for a bottle of local wine, some beef carpaccio wraps followed by a calf kidney dish in a delicious sauce.
Following this I went for a wander. Nantes is a beautiful city. Wonderful architecture and friendly people. – I dare say it has some downsides, I mean, I hate to think what property prices are like but I found it a great place.
Bumped into a bunch of folk who are into full contact medieval fighting as their chosen sport – thoroughly good people who spoke good English and were happy to lead me astray and make the following morning somewhat slow…
The next day was mixed. A late but full on and delicious breakfast buffet followed by a slow roll south. After being turned away from a few full campsites I eventually found one on the outskirts of Saint-Gilles-Croix-de-Vie – my first real sighting of the Atlantic. Reception sold me a couple of beers while I set up and I wandered into town (village really) for a steak and a beer, finished off with an Irish coffee. After that, I was done for the day and retired for the night.
Here’s some video from the couple of days riding. Needless to say I didn’t have the camera rolling much while it was tipping it down!