Tuesday, 9 July 2013

And enjoyed a lot of nice ones...

..in England and France and then back to the Scottish Borders. All different and all good in their own ways. Probably too late for a chronological review so in no particular order, the highlights.

To start, very unexpectedly, cycling or more correctly tricycling. Now I think a little background information is needed here....Back in the mists of time when Mrs Starke was just a young thing, family Starke lived in a village but on a busy road and Mrs Starke was a clumsy child so she never had a bicycle. Other children had bicycles, one child had a tricycle, pale blue with a place for luggage. In a rash of generosity this child let Mrs Starke try out her trike. Now as well as having a busy road, the village was quite hilly.

Young Mrs Starke was unfamiliar with wheeled vehicles, she sat on the trike and steered downhill. Fairly quickly. Towards the road. She hadn't thought to ask how to stop it. The other children advised the brakes. Maybe not quite so politely. Mrs Starke didn't know where these were, so did the next best thing. There was a handy telephone pole.

Neither Mrs Starke nor the trike were unscathed.

And so there we were on the Ile de Re. A very flat island well equipped with cycle paths. We'd had a long drive to get there so weren't too keen on using the car; walking could get us only so far and the island's donkeys were strictly for the kids. To the rescue YooToo bike hire. They had caught my eye already with their spotty bikes, there were spotty tandems too but I didn't think that would be fair on Mr Starke. Outside the shop was a spotty Penny Farthing. And deep in the recesses was a trike, a lovely spotty trike with a basket on the back. I later found out these (well not with spots) had been the traditional way of transporting goods around the island. Perfect. Monsieur YooToo also produced a box, which he adapted as a fine seat for Dogstarke.

After a slightly bruising start (Trikes are heavy and I still had a tiny problem with the whole brake thing) we were off and managed trips to La Flotte and Loix. Once Dogstarke had swallowed the indignity of being in a box she enjoyed it too, particularly when I built up speed. If we got some slightly bemused looks at first, after all an adult...on a trike..they dissolved as soon as people noticed "Le Petit Chien" in her box.

Looking back to St Martin from Loix harbour


It was a little disappointing to find this

But luckily there was no such sign on the beach at St Martin and a refreshing paddle was enjoyed by (almost) all.
To be continued......

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