Metz to Basel

Well that was an eventful morning… We’d met Katerina the night before – she was hitch hiking to Paris and also staying at Jerome’s place. To help her out Jake had offered to give her a lift to a good hitch hiking spot just outside of Metz but this didn’t quite happen. By 9am they were all kitted up to go and Jake (trying to be quite and not disturb anyone) accidentally flooded the engine… So the tool kit came out and he had to remove the spark plugs to let the excess fuel evaporate. Half an hour later were all set to go but unfortunately this was too long for Katerina to wait. She headed off to the road and made her way from there. Somehow though, we think she didn’t mind so much not having a lift on the bike – she hasn’t been on a bike before and we got the feeling she was a little nervous!

Anyway, spark plugs back in and the bike started first time. Although I trusted that this was all that would be needed part of me was still a bit unsure – I imagined someone having done something to the bike overnight or something else to prevent it starting.
On the road our first stop was Nancy. Jerome had told us that this was a must see place en-route and he was right. The contrast between Nancy and Metz was striking – Nancy felt distinctly French while Metz felt German. Here we stopped for some lunch and to cool down before making our way south – this time on the smaller roads.

Between Nancy and Colmar we passed through small towns and some beautiful countryside. It’s a shame that while on the bike I couldn’t take any photos. The final part of this leg took us over some mountains on fantastic windy roads which Jake loved!
Colmar we’d visited during our last trip but I was keen to go back – with it’s old Medieval buildings the charm of the city really caught me. While Jake had a beer I took a walk around the centre. I think we both needed this our to cool down and get out of our bike clothes. The picture of the bike here has all of our gear piled on top. Can you imagine wearing all of that lot in 35 degrees?!

The final part of our journey was pretty straight forwards: it is all highway from Colmar to Basel. In under an hour we were crossing the border into Switzerland  and country number four. Although highway is pretty boring by this time in the day we just wanted to get there. We finally arrived at our host Erol’s house around 8pm and it felt good to jump off the bike and know we didn’t have to ride any more that day. It had been a long, very hot and tiring few hours.


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