June 2014 – Update

Been a nice busy month cycled to Paris at the beginning of the month and had a weekend camping down the New Forest; also I’ve started having physio three times a week.

Decided to go on my trip to Paris seeing as I didn’t have any physio that week, I thought it would do me a bit of good to go on a ride, particularly as I was in a lot of pain the week before!

I caught the night crossing from Portsmouth to Le Havre on Sunday June 1st which leaves England at 11 o’clock at night and arrives in Le Havre France at 8 o’clock the following morning. The idea which I’d done a few years ago was to follow the river Seine into Paris and then come out of Paris along the Avenue Verte the London to Paris cycle route, although I was only going to go as far as Dieppe to get the ferry back to Newhaven, England and then just cycle the forty miles along the coast back home.

 

The first day I covered nearly 100 miles a bit further than it should have been but I decided to go exploring some cycle routes along the Seine and see where they took me, it was ok and good to go somewhere different and it was away from the main road but it was as expected all over the place and a long way round to get to my destination of Les Andelys where I was going to camp for the night, not my sort of cycling at all, I don’t really see the point in going from A to C via B if I can just go straight to C!

The second day I made it into Paris, again using cycle routes a bit, but mainly on roads, once there I had a little ride around and got somebody to take my photo with the Eiffel tower in the background, not very well though I struggled to find somebody to take it, it was surprisingly quiet! After having my photo taken I went to find the campsite in Paris which is located along the Seine at Bois de Boulogne.

The following day I woke up to rain, a lovely start to the day, always nice having to pack away in the rain! After the first hour or so of rain it turned showery, getting fed up with putting my waterproof jacket on and off, you get just as wet from the inside out anyway I just left it off and got wet and dried off when it stopped as it was a fairly warm day, shortly after midday it started to rain again and as before I just carried on riding, unfortunately this time it didn’t stop and the wind also got up, by now I was soaked through to the skin and getting cold, so I put my waterproof jacket on which helped a bit to warm me up, but it was my hands they were cold they were completely numb I couldn’t feel them at all! With no campsites around and I certainly didn’t fancy camping wild so I checked into a hotel! My hands by now were so cold that I couldn’t my wallet or passport out of my pocket, I considered asking the man on the desk to go into my pockets for me but thought twice about that one!! After a nice shower I soon warmed up, it wasn’t particularly cold this day it’s just that once you get wet you get cold fairly quickly.

 

Wednesday started off cloudy but the sun soon came out and burned off the clouds. I started the day on roads until I reached Forges-les-Eaux then joined the Avenue Verte which from this point runs along an old railway line. It’s a lovely smooth traffic free ride until a few miles from Dieppe then your back onto roads. I arrived at the ferry terminal at about 3pm and caught the 6pm ferry back to England and arrived home at about 1am the following morning.

 

Started going to physio three times a week now which has been a long time coming and I wonder if it might be a little too late as I now find it very hard to walk any distance without my leg going completely numb and giving way! Physio’s fun though with a good crowd of people all with similar problems, although most of them seem to be suffering with back pain where as I’m not really in too much pain it’s just the numbness that’s a problem!

 

With the weather being so good this month we decided to go to the New Forest and camp for the weekend at Holland’s Wood near Brockenhurst, Julie didn’t fancy cycling there so we loaded the car up and put the bikes on the roof. No problems getting a campsite this time unlike the last time we came down on the May bank holiday only to find all the campsites where either full or flooded! On the Saturday we cycled through the New Forest to Lymington a pretty Georgian market town situated on the southern edge of the New Forest, between Southampton and Bournemouth at the western end of the Solent, it’s got loads of little independent shops and there was a very good market in the high street the day was there. There was also a D-Day ceremony going on all weekend with the railway station and most of the shops done up like they would have been back in the 1940s with a range of themed stalls and attractions including 1940s vehicles, jeeps and a NAAFI wagon, some restored D-Day crafts, HMS Medusa and a Pilot Rescue Launch 44, free open top bus rides, a dig for victory flower display, a display of wartime propaganda; children’s entertainment; vintage sweet shop and fair rides and an unveiling of a plaque to commemorate D-Day down on the quay side. It was a nice day spent in Lymington with all the festivities going on, we finished the day off with a barbeque back at the tent.

 

On the Sunday as we started to pack up where we were visited by some of the many ponies that roam free in the New Forest.

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