Wednesday, 23 September 2015

Au Revoir Alternatiba

Ons avance, la Transition arrive!

From Geneva we took a shortcut along Lac Leman, enjoying the Alpenpanorama....


stayed in Aubonne with the chickens where we met a funny baker, couldn't afford a cup of coffee, ate pasta for five days in a row and bought the most expensive courgette ever. On our way up to the Col du Marchairuz we ran out of water and had to ask for some in a farm that had no water access but kindly gave us some of their bottled water and told us they had had snow up over the roof the last winter. We saw more flash expensive silly cars than we ever saw in our whole entire lives, overtaking us one after the other to go for a nice lunch at the top. Or were they all sick of eating pasta and were off to the biggest Bio Co-op in France in little Pontarlier to buy some inexpensive quality food?

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Well that's what we did once we arrived in the beautiful Valle de Joux. We felt like rich barons in the local supermarket... Unfortunately it was Sunday, the clock makers were all shut and we couldn't stock up on precision time keeping instruments.

From then it was down hill! Jippieeeee! Luckily there were no roller skaters about.

We stayed by the source of the river Doubs, in Mouthe where we felt cold for the first time this summer! And then we found out it gets really hot and really cold here!
 Cold  hot

On the way to Besancon we stumbled across this traveling cinema. We couldn't stay anyway but it would have been a very hot evening of films in the tiny little tent...

The cows were cooling down... yes, it is hot again!

After a nice rest in Besancon we rolled on, rejoined  Le Tour Alternatiba and stopped in Baume les Dames, where we met some old and some new friends, enjoyed a shared meal in the town square where the weekly evening of entertainment was taking its course, Zumba, beer and sausages... la belle vie!

We rested the night in the beautiful garden of the Cafe Associative Gaia - merci!

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We are back in the beautiful valley of the river Doubs, endless cycle highways, rolling green hills either side we know it is easy cycling now... until dang ding daaah... ping! ping! ... ping! ...... ping! four spokes brake on Kevins temporary rear wheel and we have to push to the next train station to take the train to Mulhouse, where we spend the next five hours trying to bodge some wheel together out of the old spokes we have, it is Sunday of course and even though there are at least two bicycle associations at the fabulous Alternatiba Mulhouse event, none of them have any spokes with them or live close enough to bring us one of their hundreds of wheels that apparently fill their basements.
We managed to get the wheel back into some kind of shape and rode very carefully to Freiburg, where we bought some new spokes and fixed the temporary wheel again.
We just about made it to Strasbourg, our last etape with Le Tour Alternatiba!
We enjoyed our last Velorution, our last Alternatiba event and went to hug everybody goodbye the next day.
Then we took the train for a quick visit to Augsburg, to visit sisters new baby and where the new rim for Kevins wheel was waiting. We visited the Grandhotel Cosmopolis Peace Conference, a summer camp in the middle of the city... with a pedal powered solar shower!!

Back in Strasbourg we played our show in Xaviers garden to say thank you to the neighbours for storing our bikes during our little visit...
... and then it was time to pack our bikes and get back on the road. Just the two of us again, no more Tour Alternatiba...
We miss you! So much positivity! We think of you, the nice times we had together and the many kilometers and many events you still have ahead of you! And we wish you lots of strength to make it to the end!

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Now it is only a couple more days for les Alternabistas. After 5600 km in the saddle, 187 stages, 6 countries visited Le Tour Alternatiba will arrive in Paris to a massive welcome of thousands of cyclists and a whopping event!
Allez! Allez!
We wish we were there!

Here a little link to the official Alternatiba Song, featuring some of the heroes of this years full and fun and hurting and loving, fantastic Alternatiba summer!

While we cycle along, the country side keeps sending us little reminders of Le Tour Alternatiba....

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