Last night dinner at Hotel Restaurant La Cygonje in Abreschviller. The proprietor looked a bit dissappointed because we ordered the cheapest dish, Spätzeler, and the cheapest wine. We already had a good lunch so … Then we went back to hotel Bel Air. We are the only guests. The staff is on holiday, according to the boss. Permanently, we assume!
It’s a little bit run down there. In the past, people came here because of the healthy air. These days, you can fly to Gran Canaria for the same price. Our host leaves us and tells us to behave! What is she thinking?? We just cycled 130 km against the wind and tomorrow we have to face the Col Donon.
We have breakfast at 730 and at 815 we leave for the climb of the Col Donon, 20 Km. It is a runner, ie increase rate is between 3 and 6%.
In the descent Wil and Jan knock down at 70 per hour. Ad and I take it a bit slow.
We have a coffee in a hazy restaurant at the top. It is not very luxurious here. The houses are grayish. As we drive further, it gets better. The houses are beautifully painted and better maintained.
We buy baguettes, ham and cheese at the Lidl in Villé and have lunch on a square. Around 1 we get into Alsace. Vineyards everywhere, it’s really hot and the towns seem to be designed by Anton Pieck. We take another small detour to Ribeauvillé. .
It is very busy with elderly tourists. Lots of French people obviously, but also Dutch people on Gazelle E-bikes. We are now heading for our bed and breakfast in Soultzmatt. First we have to beat a 11% collar. There is nobody there at our sleeping address, the key is there on the gate. We shower and wash our bike-pants. Then we are off to buy groceries because we want to cook. Baked potatoes with lettuce and chicken fillet and mayonnaise. Mocca ice cream. Delicious meal!
We did not sleep really well. Had to share the sofa with Jan. We are going to the best baker in town to get ourselves some bread.
We leave on time. After a few kilometers to Germany we leave behind the hills and vineyards of Alsace and drive through the cornfields. The landscape immediately becomes a lot more sowier. Today Ad is our navigator. After about 20 km he says: I lost it! We have to go back, fortunately only a few miles. You were definitely thinking of Jolanda, we assume. Ad talks his own lingo when navigating.
First we drive along the canal from the Rhône to the Rhine and then along the old canal of Huningue. Nice and flat and there is a fresh breeze coming from the water. We drink coffee on a terrace close to the canal and then bike into Basel via the Dreiländerbrücke. We can continue without passport control! We are biking along the Rhine now. It is still very clean here, the water is blue-green and there is a strong current. We see tens of thousands of people floating on the river with or without a rubber vest.
We are drinking a bottle of Coke. 18 Euro, welcome to Switzerland! We have lunch at the river, bought stuff at the Coop. It is difficult to get through Basel and it takes a lot of time. At Laufenbruch we cross the border and now we are back in Germany again. In Walshut we first pick up some chips and then we’re off to our sleeping address. The managers are Chinese, we can not eat or have breakfast at all. Will and I decide to first go to the Supermarket otherwise we will not have any breakfast tomorrow. Then we have a spaghetti meal while we watch Urugua-Portugal, exciting!