It's that time of year when the dreariness sets in; it's cold and I'm not riding my bike. Wheels turn in my mind. It's some sort of self-preservation I think, looking ahead. I crave forward momentum, to research and plan, to dream.
It's my 50th birthday this summer along with one of my best friend's. She and I go way back, an unlikely two-some that became close. Most of our adult lives have been opposite: she married and had her boys young while I played. Later we exchanged roles. Now she and her beau are outdoor fanatics, backpacking, rafting, and skiing. And through all our life changes and challenges we've kept in touch.
Five years ago I met her in Oregon for a week of bike travel. We slept outdoors without a tent while stars danced over our heads. That was her idea and I loved it. She even taught me how to build a fire.
She's game for almost anything. I suggested a 2012 cycling trip in France. She said yes.
|A 10 year old copy of Fodor's France is keeping me company this winter.|
And so it is that we are planning an adventure on wheels. We'll bring clothing, helmets, a small pack for hiking diversions, even a French/English dictionary, maybe tote a bit of camping gear, or not. The planning will unfold in the spring.
I'm thinking Provence. I've read so many Peter Mayle books (A Year in Provence, among others) that I've fallen in love with lavender fields, old men drinking at cafes, red wine, boules in the dirt, markets...and skinny French cyclists pumping up steep hills. I've recently tried foie gras and like it. I never imagined I'd like goose liver, for heavens sake!
Or some other region in France. After all, the country is filled with oh-so-many regions to satisfy our wanderlust.
|Photo credit: SuperStock|
|Photo credit: The Travels|
Another thing, we'll be women on the loose, so-to-speak. We may stumble into Gerard Depardieu. (Let me help you with that baguette, monsieur.)
|Photo credit: Rides a bike|