Day 14 : Rain and hunger
It had been drizzling the entire night. Everything in my bivy bag had stayed dry. Bram's had some puddles of water on it, which had leaked through a bit. We got the bread we ordered yesterday and paid. During the first five kilometers we continued descending the Cormet de Roseland. We hadn't pedaled once when we started the Col des Saisies. When we reached the top, it began to drizzle. We didn't take a picture but went down right away. During the descent it started to rain harder. With one eye closed and one open we went downhill. Every time we saw a speck of road and then got water in our eyes. It started raining harder and harder and also seemed to hail, at least that is what it felt like when the drops hit our arms. Underneath some roof I put the rain covers over my panniers and we put on warmer clothes. A bit later, it seemed like it would stop raining, so we continued. Within a few seconds it started to rain even harder than it did before; we really couldn't see anything. We rode up someone's driveway and took shelter under their roof.
After descending col de Saisies, col de Aravis started immediately. It was dry again, so now we were feeling way too warm with all our extra clothes on. At the top of the col des Aravis we quickly took a picture as proof that we had climbed it.
Col de Aroavies, as we called it
Again we didn't get a chance to rest because during the descent of this col, the col de le Croix Fry started. We passed a lady who was running uphill. At first I thought she was a bit crazy for waving her arms continuously. At the top we ate an apple and granola bar, and of course we got a stamp while the entire restaurant was watching. The running lady passed again. Now I realized why she was waving her arms, there was a big cloud of flies around her.
Col de la Croix Fry, with dark clouds in the background
After this mountain we only passed small villages, nowhere was an open store. We hadn't been able to do groceries anywhere. First we had to finish a really steep climb, but afterward we would likely be able to find a store. We rode around Annecy. Every time we passed a village there was no place to buy food. At one town Bram made a detour in an attempt to find a store, but found none. It was already 4 o'clock. There was a sign indicating a supermarket near the highway we were about to cross, but we could not find it. In the next village was a restaurant, closed. After starving for two hours we found a supermarket where we could shop after first searching for the local ATM.
Because we were hungry we bought way too much food. It was also relatively early and we were fairly close to our intended campsite. We bought wine, chocolate-covered nuts, and fruit to stuff ourselves again later. We ate dinner in front of the supermarket. The sun was shining. This time instead of paté de campagne or paté de canard, we had paté lapin. That is ground rabbit. When we had eaten an entire bread covered in Roger rabbit and a few puddings, we cycled on.
It was less than 15 kilometers to the campsite, today we would arrive nice and early. The town of Rumilly was quite big and it was hard to find the camping. The best tactic, we had learned, was to cycle to the town's center. There are always plenty of people there and if you are lucky a map. We quickly found a map showing a 'rue de camping' or 'campsite road'. However, there was no sign indicating there actually was a campsite there. Three ladies were chatting on a bench in a nearby garden and had been watching us for a while. I went over to ask if they knew if there actually was a campsite.
When I turned around to head over I already heard one say 'ils vont demandér' or 'they come to ask'. They didn't know if the rue de camping had a campsite, but there was surely one on the rue de Madrid. That was outside the town's center, near the industrial area and away from the 100 cols route. We didn't really have a choice and definitely didn't want to camp in the wild tonight. After cycling another four kilometers through the city, a large road, and part of the industrial area we found the campsite.
I didn't expect a campsite in such an area would be nice, but I was wrong. The desk was supposed to close at 20:00, we arrived at 21:00, just when they were closing the door. We paid for one night, after which I put my helmet on my luggage carrier. Usually I always clicked it to my carrier straps. When we cycled on my helmet fell. That wasn't the first time that day. I probably dropped it a dozen times during this vacation, and twice Bram nearly cycled over it.
We couldn't directly go to our designated area. The man staying next to us was blocking it because he needed to park his mobile home. As he was too lazy to push his caravan 10 meters, he had a remote with which he could move it. The ten minutes it saved by not having to push it probably cost him 400 euros, for which he would have had to work half a week extra.
It was quite a challenge to devour the half a liter of wine, bag of nuts, two chocolate bars, and grapefruit. Because it took longer than expected to find the campsite it was still pretty late. It was dark when we returned from the shower, so we went to bed immediately.
Distance cycled : 140 km.