Tuesday 2 September
Just before leaving Clairvaux, we had our photo taken with the 2 nuns and Gerard from Rotterdam. We purchased necessary goodies from the mobile patisserie ( van ) that tooted at 8 am outside our abode. We were good to go.
The day started with an uphill rocky path for us both that quickly went down the other side. From then on it was fairly gently ups and downs and some very long straights. We spent the whole day together = Tony was on tarmac all day.
Later in the day we came across 2 Italian walkers who were doing the same route as us. They were older gents, and only one spoke English. They walked slower than us, but they had been walking since Calais in early August, so respect. One can’t judge a walker by his / her pace. We parted company from our new Italian friends when we came to the B&B that we had booked for the night. The Italians were walking a further 4 miles to the next village of Mormant.
We felt very pleased that our walking day had ended so early ( 3.30 pm ), and since there was no reply at the B&B we made ourselves comfortable on some flat grass and read / snoozed in the sun. An hour or so later the gent of the B&B arrived from having walked his dog. We greeted each other and confirmed that we had a booking for the night………..but it turned out that we didn't ! Straight away shock waves went from top to toe at the thought of a night wandering the streets and / or sitting on church steps awaiting Christian kindness.
I consulted my trusty notepad for the info about this evenings accommodation, and the man confirmed that we were indeed at the address that I had noted, but that the phone number was not his. He kindly phoned the number that I had booked with, and fortunately he recognised the answering machine voice of being that of another B&B down the road at Mormant ( of 4 miles away ). I had to break the news to Tony, who's feet were already tarmac-ed out. The news was not graciously received.
In order to be sure that the B&B at Mormant actually existed ( what other mistake could I have made ? ) I felt it necessary to cycle ahead to see the place with my own eyes. In my state of peddling panic, I caught up with the Italians. I relayed our story to them. I was very much comforted by the fact that the phone number that they had booked their B&B with was the same number that I had in my notepad. Whew number 1.
I cycled on, and arrived at the B&B in Mormant. I had indeed booked this one. Whew number 2.
Tony arrived in due course ( mood having lightened slightly ), and so did the Italians, and 2 Americans. All six of us shared a meal together ( prepared for by the lovely B&B lady ), and had a fun and interesting evening. It seemed that Tony forgiven me by now for my earlier administration error. Whew number 3.
Distance - 22 miles ( oops ! )
Distance since Helmsley - 885.35 miles