Thursday, January 17, 2013

From Rome to Paris (via Spain)

We left Rome after two days so that we could meet Jean-Marc in Montpellier France. We were originally planning to drive up the Mediterranean coast, but after accounting for the tolls and fuel prices we realized it would be quite a bit cheaper to take the ferry to Barcelona and drive from there.

I was expecting something more like the smaller Alaskan ferries I'd been on. Instead it was the largest ship I've been on and a nice change of pace from driving.  
It was also the emptiest ship I've been on. There was only one other table in use at the lounge while we were there.  

Happy to be out of Barcelona we decided to drive through the Pyrenees on our way to Montpellier. That gave us a nice empty winding road to drive... We saw several people riding bikes, but few cars. I'm pretty sure mountain roads are good for my soul.
Seems the winter has been a bit dry this year
Corrie in the Pyrenees.
Jean-Marc took over navigation between Montpellier and Paris so we got to see a lot more of the country side and some interesting little towns. I also discovered all kind of new cheeses.

An old Chateau & Village in Auvergne
Jean-Marc and I at a random bird watching blind we found. 
Moldy bread in Roquefort. They use only this kind of mold to make their cheese.  We we'ren't allowed to take pictures in the cheese aging room. Roquefort is a little strong to eat straight, but pretty good on bread. 
There are an amazing number of castles still standing in rural parts of France. 
Seriously, they are everywhere.
Jean-Marc at the base of the castle above
 Viaduc de Millau, the tallest bridge in the world. The two pillars in the center are taller than I Eiffel tower...
Looking up from the base.

I'm about to board a plane for Tanzania to climb Kilimanjaro in a few days. I'm not sure what I will have for internet when I get there so I may fall behind on posting again the next few weeks... 

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