From the miserable wet of Normandy I decided to head straight over to the champagne region south of Reims, skipping Paris altogether. I can always visit Paris either on the way back or get the Chunnel over some other time. This trip is about Russia, Mongolia and Siberia after all, and Europe is just a whistle stop tour. Besides, it’s Switzerland and Austria that I want to see in mainland Europe.
The champagne region is quite pretty, a bit of a contrast to the what I have seen of France thus far, which looks not to dissimilar to parts of rural England. Notpretty enough to stop andget any pictures I’m afraid. The champagne region is made up of vineyards that look, from afar, like pin striped fields. The region is looks more affluent than and is probablydue to the overpriced sparkling wine that the champagne that the region produces. FYI, no other place is allowed to sell this beverage under the name champagne, this is reserved to the plonk produced here, and only here. To use the term champagne for a sparkling wine produced elsewhere would bea terminological inexactitude that could get you in the guillotine round these parts.
As the day was drawing to a close I decided to look for my first campsite. Spotting a nice little track leadig down to what I thought was a stream turned out to be a big boo boo. I had my first ‘OFF’. What started off as a decent, if a bit steep, track, soon became a quagmire of mud. I lost the front end, recovered but then it went and down we went (we = me and Hitch, we’re in this together, for better or worse). I leave you to watch the video for the low down on what happened. Sorry, I drop the F-Bomb a lot in this video!
What have I learnt from today?
Don’t blindly go down steep mud tracks on road tyres, especially after rain!