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It has been a very variable day today – uphill or downhill, dry or soaking wet. The one constant has been the kindness of the people that we have met.

We left our wild camp this morning about 0900hrs and were immediately back on the route and climbing.

Around 10 o’clock we arrived in a small town called La Chaux. We started to charge our phones at the Townhall/post office. Soon however I noticed a gentleman at a cafe that was closed but I cheekily asked him if it was possible to have coffee. He agreed to my unreasonable request and we went inside. In the cafe/bar I met his parents in-law Jean-Pierre and Aliette who are visiting from Reunion – if you don’t know, it’s a small island in the Indian Ocean east of Madagascar.

We chatted (via a translation app) about all sorts from COVID to Putin. It was lovely to talk to Jean-Pierre and also to stroke Pop the beautiful gentle giant you see in the fur coat !

Jean-Pierre and Aliette (& Pop)

From here we soon hit woodland and extreme climbs. It was dry at this point but challenging cycling due to the gradient of the hills.

The rain started as we left the woods and it continued until just before we arrived in Les Rousses.

Big hills and rain

We made it into Les Rousses and had made the decision to stay the night in a hotel / B&B as it was wet and we were tired and a bit cold.

I tried 2 hotels and a B&B – all closed . This is a ski resort or summer holiday destination and we are kind of between the two right now.

After failing with the B&B, was walking back to meet Tracey when I noticed she was talking to a gentleman by the bikes. Michel and his wife Sylvie are cyclists who have travelled extensively and have both acted as hosts and guests through ‘Warmshowers’ . Michel very kindly offered us a place to stay . They gave so much more. Their kindness, hospitality. their time to show us around Les Rousses and to help with forward planning – amazing . Two lovely people and two new friends to whom we are indebted.

Michel & Sylvie
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