Let’s end this before the heat ends me! - What to do between doctors visits - CycleBlaze

July 5, 2019

Let’s end this before the heat ends me!

Leaving Gueret was not easy. The city is built on a hillside and the road I was taking out of town was at he uppermost  point. Because the hotel where I was staying was built on the autoroute it was at a low spot in town, so my first task was to climb out of hole I had put myself in. It’s good that it was early then when I left. With the forcast for 35 degrees in the afternoon I wanted to be finished very early. City traffic was not too bad in this provincial town, so I did not encounter any problems as I clawed my way up some vey steep streets. At the top of Gueret the route leveled off and for the first ten or so kilometers  westward it was almost level. Then followed a long descent into Benevent l’Abbaye, where I stopped for coffee.

The thirteenth century abbey church is being renovated. Now they need to fix the clock...
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A Cistercian interior, but unlike the abbeys that remain in the order, this one has been converted to a parish church, which accounts for the decoration and stained glass, all of which is “modern” i.e. newer that the seventeenth century.
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Gregory GarceauHi Keith,

Growing up Catholic, I used to spend a fair share of time in uncomfortable pews, but those things look like the absolute WORST! There aren't even any kneelers. The Liturgy of the Eucharist must feel like some kind of t0rture. Perhaps the beauty of the interior might take one's mind off the pain.

Sorry to hear about the hands and the eyes, but I'm glad to see you are making the best possible use of the time between doctors appointments.
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3 years ago
Keith KleinTo Gregory GarceauHi Greg,
Maybe church attendance would go up if they put in more comfortable pews, but probably not. This church is something of a mish-mash of styles, at least on the interior. The architecture is in the purest, unadorned Cistercian style, but the rest is very neo-baroque Catholic that one sees everywhere.
I think you might be disappointed in the Creuse. I had a hard time finding the high quality of restaurant there that one finds elsewhere in this country. Population loss is probably the cause as elsewhere in rural settings. I read in Jeff Lee’s journal about his ride through Nebraska through towns very familiar to me from when my parents lived there and it was much the same. Sic transit gloria mundi.
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3 years ago

I set my sights on La Souterraine as a stopping point because it is a stop on the main line between Paris and Limoges and I will be able to get a train home from there. Got another doctor’s appointment on Monday that I dare not miss. For once in my touring career, the back roads are more direct than the major routes, and I encounter virtually no traffic on my ride. 

I thought I should add at least one random castle to this account. This one is on the road to La Souterraine.
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I got to La Souterraine at 11:30, far too early to check into a hotel and even too early for lunch. To use up some time, I went to the railway station to get schedules for the morning. Weekend trains are sparse  in these parts, and I would need to be out early to get the morning train north bound. I located a hotel but it was a long climb out of town to get to it. It did have a restaurant, and most importantly air conditioning, so I could hunker down inside to escape the heat, which was already building. Climbing the hill out of town, I was drenched with sweat and knew that I would not be doing any riding in the afternoon. I stopped in a McDonalds to get a coke and use the wifi to book into the hotel, which proved to be less than 500 meters away! I tried to check in early, and had to wait in the lobby while a room was readied. Once installed, I cranked up the AC, took a shower and rinsed out some clothes for the trip home. 

After working on the journal and watching a few videos, I tried to go for a walk, but the heat drove me back inside in a few minutes. I ate at the hotel in the evening, which was nothing special (is the Creuse a gastronomic desert?) and went to bed early.

Today's ride: 56 km (35 miles)
Total: 307 km (191 miles)

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