I am back connected to the internet, sitting in a hotel in Trier, Germany and instead of dealing with the near 1000 (?!?) emails I received in the 36 hours or so of unconnectedness, I felt I should give an update on my trip. Yesterday was a glorious day in a lot of ways. First, the weather these last few days has been glorious and yesterday was perhaps the best of them all since the temperature had dropped a few degrees. There was a rather stiff breeze, but it found its way to our backs for most of the ride.
I started the day with a little stroll around Arlon, the largest city in the Ardennes in Belgium. While the town is certainly not as captivating as Brugge or Gent, it still has European charm. It also had a surprisingly interesting church near the center of town with very impressive stain glass windows behind the altar. I am certainly no expert when it comes to just about anything having to do with religion, but I enjoyed the church.
We left Belgium, and headed across Luxembourg which was a glorious ride. I came across an unbelievable bike shop in Mersch, Luxembourg: Ostergaard’s Bike Shop. The owner was a former pro racer and we chatted for a bit about the state of racing today and his take on things.
Next, I had to haul my fat carcass (and extremely heavy bike–I guess it was weighing about 70-80 pounds with all the gear I was carrying) over a several kilometer long hill with a section of 18%. It was the first time in a long time that I considered getting off the bike and walking since I was very much in the wrong gear and the bike would not shift. I am also fat and out of shape (which I believe I already mentioned). After the climb, I treated myself to the local beer.
No doubt the way I “treat” myself is contributing to the problem mentioned in the preceding paragraph.
Eventually, we came to the Mosel river and crossed into Germany and back into wine country. I was on my own for dinner and had a fabulous meal with great conversation at a restaurant just around the corner from the hotel (and directly across from the house where Karl Marx was born). It was not a tough sell to go there–it’s called Der Weinhaus (the wine house) and they had well over 100 different German wines for sale by the glass.
But that is the topic of an upcoming post.
Today we ride up the Mosel to the town of Bernkastel, and I hope to do a bit of wine tasting on the way.
I am sure that must be a shock.