Saturday, 11 October 2014

Switzerland, part 2

Saturday october 4th, after 5 nights in Laufenburg and 9 without sleeping in a tent, we hit the road again, happy but regretting a bit the warmth of Paul' house and company. Paul, emotional like a grand-father seeing his grand-children adventuring in far away lands, kept asking: what else could I give you? Some more jam? Some fruits? :-)

We only had to cross the Laufenburg's bridge to be in the Swiss' land and their perfect cycling path again. Swiss people, very proud of their country, brandish their flag and use the red color as much as they can: everywhere and all the time. The first time we saw the cycling path's sign in red, we were a bit confused, not very certain we should go or stop :-)

Fortunately, after some lazy relaxing time, we didn't lose the cycling reflexes. The muscles, the feet and even the bums respond positively :-). Not long after the departure, we took a wrong turn which made us cycle for some 5km more but allowed us to assist a village's saturday "festival". People looked at us like at zoo's animals. It was a bit funny....

The road was pleasant with some uphills quite hard where, even with the smallest gear and a heart beat at 160, I climbed at 2km/h!!!! (2km/h = French expression = very very slowly :-) )

At the end of the day, we decided to stop and asked a lady the way to go to the camping. And the answer was as a thunder: it was closed!!!! But then she assured us that there was a place a few km more where we can set up our tent. We rode then for some extra km, found in the middle of the forest, a tiny "campsite" without a "private" sign and decided that it was The place. 

So we had our first wild camping experience and of course, had a very bad night sleep because of strange noises of some animals during the night, of apples and nuts falling from their trees, of the church's bell every 15mn and of course of an uneasy feeling :-) :-)

Sunday October 5th

We got up early, got ready quite quickly because we left almost all the bags on the bikes and because of the morning "grooming" was expetidious :-) It was for the first time that we are on the road before 8:30 AM.  The weather was mild but froggy. And we continued the swiss cycling path that took us through swiss countryside and small villages. 

One particular thing in Switzerland that you can find from time to time, tiny "shops" along the road with fruits, veggie or juices.... There is no casher but only price tags, you just serve and pay by yourself.

I felt tired very quickly. After one hour, I didn't feel any strength on my feet and got slower and slower. We had to stop several times and even had to make a long huge pause in a Vietnamese's restaurant in Konstanz (OK, it's in Germany but right after that, we went back to Switzerland again...). It was well, not that good but acceptable. And the couple next to our table started to ask questions, probably intrigued by our bikes. In fact, some 13 years ago, they also went for a 8 months biking trip in New Zealand. 

Alessio suggested that we'd ride for some 90 km to get closer to Austria but I just said NO NO NO (!!!) and kindly requested that we'd stop before 4PM. So we found this very nice camping just by the Konstanz lake side, a bit expensive for us (23 CHF = 20 E) but so lovely and comfy. They had these huge private bathrooms like what one has at home (and not only those individual showers in a big commun bathroom) where we had our best shower since I don't know when :-). But the thing that excited us the most was the drying room for the washed clothes, heated and equipped with a huge fan!

It was a pleasure to walk around, and to have our daily beer by the lake.

In campsites in France, most campers are Dutch, here they are Swiss and German.

Monday Oct 6th

We started the day cycling along the Konstanz lake. It was a magic moment to see the morning ray of sunlight, trying to pierce through the clouds and the mist and to shine over those towns on the hillside. 

We also saw a duck, unable to jump to the shore where the female duck was strutting about, got angry and went for some exercices before the second, and successful attempt. Hope he would have a nice romance with the other one :-). We also saw a cow, persuaded that the grass at the neighbor's field was better but prevented by the hedge's string, got to its knees so it could put its head to the other side. It was also hilarious.

At some point, we crossed a bridge and what we see: Republic of Austria. Woauh, the 4th country of our journey. Bye bye Switzerland!!!

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