Normally there’d be cool photos from the Time Trial, and stories about getting caught and somewhat lost in a heavy rainstorm, and the you woman on the train who asked if Kevin could move his camera bag so she could sit next to him, and the cancelled train in the morning that meant we had to ride 25 miles at 7:15am to catch one at another station just so we could see the time trial.
But clearly today didn’t start out normal, and it didn’t end that way either. Right about the time the train gets us back to Lourdes, comes an email from SNCF, the French railroad company. I didn’t notice it for another 20 minutes, as we got to the room and started packing. That was 10:15 I think. The email said our train from Lourdes to Paris was cancelled. Seriously. As well as every other train that could get us from Lourdes to Paris. That set in motion a frantic search for some other way to get out butts up to Paris, not just so we could see the finish tomorrow, but just to get to our flight home!
Eventually we found a flight from Pau (about 25 minutes away) for a pretty exorbitant cost (about $270 each) which will get us to Paris in time for the finish, and for our flight home. There are still details to work out, like how we’re going to get the three of us, with six pieces of luggage, to the airport. Figure that out at 8am tomorrow morning, when the reception here opens and somebody might have an idea.
So, a really wild day that seemed to have ended on a really high note, until that email arrived. The French rail system has not done very well by us this year, for sure! –Mike–