The advantage of being middle-aged is that you are more likely to risk stepping out of your comfort zone. That is what we did. We agreed to take a vacation with friends where our mode of transportation was a bicycle, a set of travel maps, and a hotel with good food at the end of the day.
I would hardly be described as a romantic but, I admit I had some pretty romantic notions of traveling through the Loire Valley of France on my bicycle. That was a good thing. If we had understood the reality completely, we would have said no. Instead, we said yes and we embarked on a travel journey that at least for me was life changing. My romantic notions were not fulfilled. I experienced something very different than I was expecting. My confidence, the capacity to endure, the determination to finish, the friendship that sustained us, made finishing this adventure possible.
Let me just say the food was fabulous, the people friendly, and the mishap of being pick-pocketed on a busy subway in Paris made for an amazing vacation.
I won’t bore you with all the details. I don’t like reading long blog posts and I suspect that you don’t either. Instead, I will bore you with photos. Indulge me.
We cycled past endless miles of wheat fields and poppies
My youngest son who was amazing on this trip and was my “BTB” Best talking buddy.
He talked me up more hills than I could count. Did I mention that France is not flat?
Here is proof
My husband who passed me more than once on his bicycle and said “Woman, what the hell were you thinking?” He is still my best friend and remains a willing partner in all my crazy escapades.
Our friends who kept us laughing and eating.
Does it count as stealing if the ripe Rainier cherries are hanging over the fence?
Oh my God, the food and wine.
At the end of the day, sunburned, windburned, swollen from the heat with fatigued muscles there was always room to share in the evening.
Cheers to France!