This Sunday morning when I look at
a map of all the rides I’ve done so far, I notice my routes have been mostly to the east of my home base of Lauzun village. Today I would remedy that: I’d loop into the unknown territories west of Eymet and Miramont.
At yesterday’s market I was proud that I was able to buy meat, cheese, and baguette entirely in French. Today I transform it into a pack lunch.
Neighbours Sandy and Barry told me there was a community Christmas Fair at St-Columb-de-Lauzun village just a couple of kilometers down the road. I meet them there for coffee (even though Champagne was on offer.)
A gentleman selling quality Armagnac offers me a liberal sample, and then is astonished that I’m on a bicycle. I try to tell him – in French – that I am well-trained in this advanced cycling skill, having trained back home in Vancouver.
I pedal west on a quiet Sunday road adorned with well-preserved maisons. The temperature is mild, but the wind is cool. I alternate between pulling on my windbreaker, and tearing its zippers open after uphill climbs.
East of the village of Eymet on the D18, I realize I must take the obligatory French-cow-in-the-pasture photo.
Eymet is a ‘bastide,’ like many of the surrounding villages. It has a main square that hosts a market once a week. Just like modern times, these buildings have business on the ground floor and accommodations above. I’ve heard that Eymet is a huge centre for British ex-pats and as I pedal around the square, I hear English conversations, not French.
The ride west from Eymet to St-Sauvetat-du-Dropt follows the Dropt River. It’s a beautiful ride and the village of St-Sauvetat is peaceful. I realize I have no idea how St-Sauvetat figures in the bible.
My spidey-sense tells me there’s something interesting around the corner. It’s an ancient Roman footbridge across the Dropt River. I pull out my sandwich and watch an optimistic fisher drop a line into the river. When it’s time to roll, I lift the cyclocross onto the cobblestoned bridge and it aces it. Road bike? No thanks!
I purposefully chase obscure side roads into St-Pardoux-Isaac, circle around behind the chapel, follow a path and discover I’m on a VTT (mountain bike path). I’m again glad I’m on a cyclocross bike and I’m glad I’m geared with a white helmet and a red jacket: I hear a hunter’s rifle shot four times.
After a couple of kilometres of clay-like mud, I steer towards the paved main road into Lauzun. Just in time before it gets dark.
Click Follow to receive an email every time a new
Cardbordeaux delivery arrives.