Bastican to Saint-Denis-sur-Richlieu - The Andersons at one - CycleBlaze

July 7, 1989

Bastican to Saint-Denis-sur-Richlieu

(Rachael) We awoke to the sounds and smells of breakfast and hurriedly got ready.  Every morning at a bed and breakfast is an exciting new experience, and no two have been alike.  Michel, our host, was busy fixing the meal when we headed downstairs.  This was his and his wife Clair's first year running a B&B.  He made a great breakfast and was very entertaining in the process.  During the meal we found out that he and Claire had only lived in Bastican since last winter.  They had relatives in the area and decided that this would be a nice place to settle down and have children.  They are expecting their first baby in ten days.  Bastican is a very small village with one store, and it sounded as if Michel would miss some of the features of a big city. 

After breakfast we packed up and headed off to Trois Rivieres.  We had a fairly strong tailwind, and the weather was good.  The visibility was better than yesterday and we could see across the Saint Lawrence to the other bank.  The riding was so easy that we didn't take a break until we reached Trois Rivieres, about 22 miles away.  Just as we were getting into the city we came to a shopping mall with a large grocery, so we stopped in.  The store was larger than Waremart, and we spent over a half hour just checking out what they had in stock.  It was such a treat having so much variety to choose from.  Scott even found some kiwi yogurt - it was very good.

Approaching Trois Rivieres
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We then made our way through Trois Rivieres, a fairly large city and not easy to cross.  After we finally made it out to the other side we found ourselves in lush farm country.  Not too long after that, Scott passed an older gentleman on a bicycle; and when I attempted to do the same he turned left right in front of me.  Apparently he didn't see me and I had no idea he was turning.  Fortunately I was able to slow way down, and I came out of the incident unscathed.  The other gentleman, a Frenchman, had a few minor scratches though.  Scott helped him up and readjusted his askew handlebars, and then the man biked off into a driveway.  I was a bit shaken by the incident but glad it wasn't worse.

We continued on to the town of Yamachiche, where we mailed a birthday card to Scott's mom and got some cash at a bank.  We then found a shady spot in a church grounds and ate some of the food we'd bought earlier.  We then continued on to St-Ignace-de-Loyola to catch the ferry across the river to Sorel.  On our way we stopped in Louisville to make reservations at a B&B in St-Denis.  At the start of the day we didn't expect to make it that far (75 miles) but since we have had tail winds we decided to take advantage of them. 

When Scott called the B&B, the person he spoke with didn't know English, so Scott got a chance to use some French.  With a little help from our French dictionary he hopefully managed to get his point across.  It was very entertaining to listen to.

We made it to St-Ignace right on time to catch the ferry.  We were unsure of when to board until we saw another bike get on, so we just followed him.  When we came to Sorel, there was a festival in progress in the center of town, with a band playing.  We looked around a bit searching for food booths, but didn't see anything interesting so we went to an Italian restaurant.  I ordered lasagna, and Scott ordered a surprise that turned out to be a cutlet and spaghetti.

The Sorel ferry
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It was about 6:30 when we finished eating and we still had fifteen miles to go so we had to get a move on.  We biked south along the Richlieu River, the same one we followed toward Vermont on the first of the trip.  We passed through a town called Saint Ours that was situated right on the river.  The lawns were very pretty, and there were several people out in them enjoying the weather.

By the time we got to St-Denis it was 8 PM and we were really ready to get off our bikes.   Upon our arrival at the B&B we found that no one spoke English.  In our tour guide it indicated that some English was spoken but apparently the children who knew English were away for the weekend.  The hostess seemed uncomfortable to be unable to communicate but we managed to get a room and find a place for our bikes.  Scott even found out what time breakfast would be served and indicated our food prices.

Today's ride: 80 miles (129 km)
Total: 1,148 miles (1,848 km)

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