Holy wow, when it stops raining this is a beautiful place to cycle! Today was perfect, light winds, sun, warm enough that I could ride in shorts, etc. So I set out for a ride up the Burgundy canal. The first hotel boats of the season are arriving. While seeing the world go by at four kilometers an hour might sound sweet to some, I prefer the “fast lane” on the towpath. This boat has been a-building for the seventeen years that I’ve lived in Burgundy and probably for a good while before that. Will it ever be finished? Time alone will tell.
Bar headed geese are not native to France, but somehow three of them took up residence in the port du canal in Dijon. They too have been here for at least seventeen years and with the constant feeding they get from passers-by, show no inclination of leaving. They are getting old, though and one day I will miss them.
The port is getting busy with the start of tourist season. I’m headed farther up the canal as it heads into the valley of the Ouche river.
This is to show Bill that not all meals are haute cuisine. I stopped in a bakery in Velars sur Ouche to get a sandwich and a Coke. This is a pain bagnat, a specialty of Nice. It is made in around bun that is sliced in two with lettuce, tuna, tomatoes, and home-made mayonnaise. Its probably my favorite type of sandwich.
Living as close as I do to the mustard capital of the world, its only fitting that I pass by a mustard factory. There are actually four of them in the area, although the last of the plants in Dijon closed a few years ago for lack of space to expand. This one is in Fleurey sur Ouche makes all the mustard for European McDonald’s as well as their own brands. Most of the mustard seed used comes from Canada because there is simply not enough produce locally to fill the demand.
I leave the canal path at Barbirey sur Ouche to climb into the hills that separate the Ouche valley from the plain of the Saone, where I live. This is the view from a spot above St. Victor. The spruces visible on the horizon mark the ruins of a medieval chateau.
After cresting the hills near the highest point in the Cote D’Or, I coast down through one of my favorite village, Arcenant. The valley will lead me to Nuits St. Georges and the vineyards of the cote and thence home. Its days like this that make living here so great, wouldn’t you agree?