Before I start, Breuil (where we stay tonight) is so small that the taxi driver this morning hadn’t heard of it.
We had bread and supermarket sausage for dinner last night, washed down with (good) supermarket wine. There were no facilities in Saint-Révérien, except the Refuge. Joe and I had to share a room (first time of many I fear). The place was pretty much filled with 2 groups of Belgians. But we had an early night and slept well.
This morning our taxi took us back to Corbigny to get bread, sausage and cheese (very good too) and then dropped us back at Guipy, where he picked us up yesterday.
It was a cold start with a chill wind all day from the north, peaking in the valleys and ebbing in the hills. There was a lot of tarmac today and we walked fast, perhaps because of the cold northerly. Both of those made it less enjoyable but we learned a lesson here, it’ll be slower tomorrow.
Our first leg today was back to Saint-Révérien, where we stayed the night. Then on to a series of tiny hamlets of no significance and no services. At the tiny hamlet of Sancenay we talked with a butcher chopping tripe in a little lean-to at the back of his house. And there is quite a big village of Moussy, where we stopped for lunch in a field and which has no services except a library in the lavoir (old communal washing facility). We had lunch of bread, cheese and sausages there in the shelter of a stone wall, a lovely setting and very warm out of the wind. T-shirts and shorts.
We were beginning to tire as we walked down a slope to the little village of Vilaine and it’s wonderful pigeon tower.
That was just before we stopped at Un Pas à la Fois (one step at a time), a pilgrim gîte run by a Quebecois and his French partner, Chantal and Dénis. Beautifully done, very hospitable and it will be family fare tonight. It’s donativo, so we are only expected to donate what we can afford. That leaves a little scope. Also beer 1 Euro, bottle of Bordeaux E2.50. It’s dorm accommodation but nicely done. We’ll have a good night.
Most the people we have met here are Belgians, they seem to all speak English but our conversations are very utilitarian and could be in any language, really. Not so the accommodation arrangements, which are done in broken French with a smattering of English. We seem to be getting by so far. And we had several conversations with local citizens. Very friendly and interested.
Tomorrow we are off to Guérigny and it has a supermarket and restaurants, along with a morning stop in Prémery for coffee and morning tea. Civilisation is approaching, with veggies, fruit and hot food!
For the second time (the first was Le Chemin) I’ve had to go to bed to warm up late afternoon. I’m just getting really cold after I stop. Common factor – having a beer! Sad.
But a lovely meal with increasingly lively conversations conducted mostly in French (Dénis, the Canadian is the only one who doesn’t speak English). Henning and Kataraina are from Dresden and 20 years old, having a gap year to learn English. But they are both fluent in French. They walked 40km today.
Dénis is a retired bar owner who has had 3 stents, a triple bypass, still smokes – and has all the answers. Good fun. And very good food, especially the mixed salad. And the chicken. And the cheeses. And the icecream.