Sunday, June 9, 2019

Butterfield Biking

Aboard the luxurious SS Catherine.  On the Butterfield and Robinson Rhone River Bike Trip.  The usual cliches apply: unpack once, the scenery outside your window changes every day.  And we have a butler who makes laundry disappear and reappear clean and folded.
It's not too bad living in a cliche. 

We finally get on our bikes - I have an e bike, Wally a racing bike.  At the first hill I turn up the juice and, pedaling ever so easily, I sail past.  At the top of the hill Wally knows how I've felt for years.  The next day he is on an e bike.

We bike down a long allee of Plane trees... a courtyard lunch at an old chateau.  Under more Plane trees.

Fully half the group of avid cyclists are on e bikes.  No shame here.  I am used to a fancy Italian racing bike, not new but light and frisky.  This e bike is like riding a draft horse with a bad attitude - on ice.  It's a fight to keep it upright, it has . a mind of its own and considers my attempts to steer merely a suggestion. 

Lovely countryside:

And we have tablets!  Samsung galaxy tablets that have a lovely map with a blue dot (you are here) and a blue line to follow...and a red line to show you where you've been or when you go off piste.  Which, despite the tablets, we manage to do.

And they talk to you! Tell you where to turn...I miss seeing the clusters of B & R travelers at the confusing intersections, waving their route notes and peering at road signs.  It was a comfort to come upon them, to know you were in the right place and not the only one who was confused.  

But today we learn the tablets' limitations:  on the way home after lunch they - and we - are in full sun.  We fare better than they do; they just quit.  We wish we could quit too...we make it back to the boat, tired but happy.

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