Dunkirk to Arras
Dunkirk to ArrasApril
Things started off beautifully today, we said goodbye to Eva-Rose and made tracks to Arras. Our very first thoughts are that in France, they are much more accommodating of bikes! The cycle lanes are brilliant – and we love that each set of traffic lights has a smaller version at the bottom for cyclists & pedestrians. Unlike England it seems the right of way is for the pedestrians and cyclists opposed to the cars – and we really like this.
Stewart has dome brilliantly at navigating the French roads and keeping us nice and safe. Adapting to cycling on the right side is much easier than I imagined, but I have drifted over to the left on the odd occasion coming out of a junction.
20 miles into our ride and Stewart is in AGONY with his Achilles tendon. No doubts that we have pushed ourselves a little too hard with 65miles/day. I am very tired and really happy to suggest we cycle 3 miles to Cassel where we can catch a train to Arras. We arrive in Arras at 3pm thanks to an easy train ride and we are greeted by our warmshowers.org host, Arnaud at 7pm. Arnaud locks our bikes up very safely and shows us our room, we are very lucky and have a floor to ourselves here! Arnaud invited us out for beers with his friends, they were lovely!! We had a fantastic evening which ended with pizza and find red wine at Arnaud’s home. Take a look at the gallery and see the fantastic lights Arnaud has – something for our wheels when we are done with this trip I think! Arnaud speaks great English – and 2 of his friends are particularly fluent. Luc and his wife Caroline both speak excellent English and kindly translated the conversations to us. Caroline used to be an English teacher. Also, and most amazingly Luc has friends in Lyons, France and Seattle, America – he is hoping to connect us as he feels they will be great hosts for us. We gratefully accept!
With Stew’s ankle so poorly our only choice is to rest – and I am so pleased about the rest. Arnaud so kindly offered us to stay another night. We cancelled our AirBnb and lost£25, but it was worth it. We are staying with Arnaud and we think tonight we will go to Luc’s for dinner. All being well we will catch a train to Paris tomorrow, which is where our rest was supposed to start so we will have had 4 days off the bike. Much needed!
Other than the ankle, things are going very well. We have met such brilliant people already and we are just days in. We are so happy and grateful for the kindness of strangers. So far we are managing to keep just on budget which is really good news for this side of the journey. We imagine Paris might put a bit of a dent in there though! 🙂
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