Jpeg“We are all travelers in the wilderness of this world, and the best we can find in our travels is an honest friend.”  RLS

Le Monastier — Le Bouchet. St Nicolas.

IMG_20140914_100623_477-1JpegI set off with my honest friend H, aka The Pieman.

We left Monastier early, for us,  faced with a 24k walk. This is where Stevenson departed from with his newly acquired  mule, Modestine. The old tracks we followed can’t  have been much different to those in his time. We walked from  hamlet to hamlet with prominent stone crosses at most of the intersections. Volcanic rocks were under our feet and the Velay volcanic  mountains a constant background. A steep drop brought us into Goudet on the Loire and a possible refreshment stop at the hotel. The conversation went something like this…

Have you a sandwich?

No.we are busy with Sunday lunch.

May we buy a baguette?

I can give you one.

Thank  you so much.

Maybe you would like a little salad with it.

Just a little, thank you.

That’s how we found ourselves eating a substantial meal in their garden.IMG_20140914_121452_557-1

The steep climb out of the valley was rewarded with fresh orange drinks in the bar in Ussel. By now we were beginning to spot fellow GR 70 walkers from different European countries.

The smart gîte in le Bouchet provided a friendly evening meal with a group  of French walkers. It was unfortunate that one of them gave us a terrible night with his snoring and coughing. The joys of  the communal gîte experience.

Gite La Retirade

Gite La Retirade

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