Day - 27 - Eauze
We loaded up our backpacks for another day. A few nights ago I weighed our packs to see how much weight we carry each and every day for seven or more hours. My pack weighs 22 pounds and Esther’s weighs 18 pounds. In addition, we each carry 4 pounds of water and sometimes food. So that puts me at 26 and Esther at 22. The recommended weight is 10% of your body weight, so we are well above that. We keep asking ourselves if we can shed some items, but everything seems to be essential for living three months. It is surprising how little we really need, though we get tired of looking at the same clothes all the time.
The only real town we passed through was Montreal. We got the same cold feeling that we got from the larger Montreal, Quebec that we visited several years ago. The Tourist office was only slightly kinder than rude and never asked where we were from. When we sat down at a table to eat our lunch in the town square, a restaurant owner came over to tell us to get lost unless we ordered something. There were no customers and it seriously looked like a public seating area. We went to a nearby convenience store where we bought a pastry and sat in front of the store which was next to Mr. Rude’s restaurant. We assumed they were for store customers, even with different tables and chairs. No sooner had we begun nibbling on our pastries, when who should come charging over to chase us off? This guy must own every table and chair in the town. Now, I could see if it were crowded, but it was 10:30 in the morning and of the 25 tables scattered around the sidewalks and square, maybe three had customers. One kind gentleman observing our interactions came over and said, “Just buy a cup of coffee and he will leave you alone.” Are you kidding me!!! We left town as soon as the dough hit our stomachs and held on to our distain for ‘Montealites’.
It was a long walk today 17.5 miles), but it was pretty level with good walking surface, even a mixed use abandoned railway path. The weather was cool as well. We passed acres and acres of vineyards and only sampled a handful of a variety of grapes. The difference between the vineyards we see here and the ones we have seen in the US is that there are no fancy wineries and tasting rooms, just field upon field of grapes competing for ground space with the sunflower fields.
We are staying at a gite in the town of Eauze and are the only guests tonight. We have the place to ourselves. The only conversation is between ourselves, where there was no French spoken.