Day 3 - Peillon - picturesque village with medieval character
August 22, 2016
Starting point: Passy
Distance: ca 550 km
Today, yet again, I woke up really early. But it took me 3 hours to leave Passy. The place was so lovely and welcoming that I regretted not having planned to stay a day or two longer.
I left the town at 10:30 knowing that it would take me at least 9 hours to arrive to my next destination. I stopped along the way at Albertville, a Town known for hosting the Winter Olympics in 1992. Its located in the Rhone-Alpes region of south-eastern France. I had lunch there, and rode directly to Peillon. The landscape was changing dramatically from high snow covered mountain peaks to the Mediterranean character of French Provence. After 12 hours of riding, I was literally exhausted. Yet somehow, in the middle of the night, I managed to drive through Nice, and find the village on the top of a high narrow rocky peak. It wasn´t funny at all having to do hair pin turns in a forest at 1:00 am. The only thought I had was that I hope the place is nice and really worth it. After all, I could have just cancelled my reservation and driven to a more convenient place. The Previous day before I had booked a room at Christina's place completely blindly. My Phone Battery was almost empty. And just as I arrived at Peillon, my phone went completely dead. It was already after midnight, and I had no clue where exactly I was going to stay, since all of that information was on my Phone. In the darkness, I noticed a soft light. It was a local restaurant. The waitress was about to close the place for the night after making the final checks. I hurried there and asked if I could charge my Phone. I must have looked really tired since even without asking I was offered an espresso and a glass of water. After 10 minutes, I sent to message to my Host hoping she wasn't already asleep. Christina, my second Host, whose place was just 50 meters from the restaurant, appeared in her window. She opened the Heavy Iron-Glass Doors, and through a stone-walled gallery, I entered her property. My jaw literally dropped when I saw the room. The was a large bed on one side, and a very vintage legged tub on the other. The Heavy curtains that covered the iron window-frames added charm, appeal, and a sense of luxury. I loved it, and asked Christina if I could stay one day more at her place.
When I woke up in the next morning, I was in for a big surprise. Pillion is a very picturesque village with a medieval look. As it turned out, Pillion is considered to be one of the most beautiful perched villages of the Cote d'Azure.
Next day - no riding, only hiking. I wanted to explore this exquisite place.
I learnt something that day. Long drives gave me nothing but stress and tiredness. Half the day, I was thinking how I could be faster, and arrive at Peillon quicker. I looked at the wonderful landscape of Rhône-Alpes with the regret that I had not planned enough time, even for short breaks. This thought hit me when I passed Laragne-Monteglin, and I saw the citadel of Sisteron, the place known as the "Gateway to Provence". It was around 7 pm, sky was covered with its brightest phase of twilight, providing an unforgettable view of the entire valley. It would be a perfect time for a stop.
I rode the A51 for another 6 hours to Peillon, which cost me a lot. From this day on, I had decided that my daily distance could not exceed 300 km and I would not drive on highways.