Zero day, almost

Today’s plan had been for a 19km hike that went up 500 meters into the hills surrounding St. Remy. The forecast was for 35 degrees (95 degrees F) and lots of sun. The heat and past two days convinced us to dial it back and instead explore St. Remy and follow along the Van Gogh trail.

The city has a well done audio tour for a couple of euros, so with the bikes parked we started wandering through the walled part of St. Remy learning about the history of the beautiful little town. From here we hopped on our bikes and jumped from Van Gogh plaque to Van Gogh plaque learning more about his time in St. Remy and a new piece art he created while living in the area. This led us to Saint-Paul Asylum where he live for a year from May 1889 until May 1890. We walked around the grounds and through his room but as it wasn’t much of a museum our visit was just over an hour.

Nearby was site Archéologique de Glanum another Roman ruins site, we were ready for a break so we looked through the gate, checked it off our list and added on a few km of peddling up the canyon road. As it was hot, we didn’t go far and of course that evening I noticed that ten minutes further would have brought us to a lake. Oh well.

In the evening we had dinner in town after just missing the last reservation at the hotel – grrr. But it set us up well for the annual running of the bulls. Not to be confused with Pamplona, Spain, St. Remy has a more tamed down version. A square in town is fenced off and cattle trucks are positions at each end of the road. A series of “runs” are made with horsemen/horsewomen “corralling” the bull(s) to lead them from one truck to the other. Sometimes it would be one bull, or two, or up to eight. For each run, a group of testosterone fuel young guys were try to grab the a bull or jump on. Of course with this brought a few injuries but nothing appeared to cause hospitalization. For me, the excitement came when the bulls would break from the horsed and run around the fenced off square. And holy shit does the adrenaline kick in when you see a bull running randomly in your direction. Three times I had to run for it but only once required jumping through the fence to seek protection. A crazy experience that I’m happy to have had.

All told we added another 10km (127km total) and 8km paddle

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