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Europe 2004

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Journal for 4-September-2004 : Chambery

A short day today but not exactly an easy one. We bagged our first real Col: the Col du Chat, at all of 638m. The lead up hills were a bit of a challenge also, thanks to my lack of navigation and map reading skills.

The view from the top over lac du Bourget and the modern looking (for a French town – red roofs and high rise) Aix Les Bains absolutely breathtaking. Maybe it was just the climb to the top that was breathtaking. Lots of traffic on this col too, almost all cyclists!

Bike path into Chamery town saved us a lot of navigation problems. It lead right to the tourist office. And it was a high quality job too, where we maintained a good clip just about all the way. All the local serious cyclists on their latest road bikes were using it.

Lunch in the park, then found a hotel, which turns out to have a wonderful outlook over the railway station. Another hotel room with a phone designed so that use of the internet is only possible with a soldering iron. I'm just off to buy one now.

It was late, I was hungry and I didn't want to sit around for hours in a smokey bar to fill my stomach. So we tried out a French knock off of Maccas. The formula was followed quite closely. The burger I ate had sickly sweet special sauce and a pickle. But the French couldn't quite bring themselves to serve it on a yucky American sweetened bread roll, and the cheese – while a bit cheddary – was soft smooth and creamy, rather processed till it's gone orange. The biggest problem was my phrase book lacked the all important request: “Supersize me!”.

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