Friday, 20 June 2008

On rain and its effects

To say that it was wet yesterday is an understatement. It was pissing down for much of the day. I was able to convince one of the Quebec-Levis ferry personnel to do the honours for the classic photograph. (Sorry, no photo for the time being, the youth hostel computer isn't set up for it.) The rain was predictably cold and wet so I was experimenting with various ways of covering up. It let up at one point when I stopped to visit a church in a town I will have to remember to look on the map to figure out which one it was. The old woman showing me around was proud to point out the book with the first entry in 1690 or so. I didn't have the heart to tell her that it was probably written much latter (say mid-19th century) as the paper was blue and the handwriting was small, neat and very consistent from entry to entry suggesting a later date. The smallness of the handwriting suggests the use of steel nib pen, something that only came into use around 1800.

There seems to have been far to little to keep the people of the area occupied. Many small towns that were never large have very big, ornate churches and a surprising number of small chapels very short distances from the main churches.

Despite the rain, I rode about 91 km. I arrive in L'Islet in time to visit the Maritime Museum. I was given a guided tour of an icebreaker built at the Davis shipyard in Quebec City in 1941. I was amused to note that most of the gauges and the like were of British manufacture!

Today was much nicer weather, a factor that I think lured into complacency. It was sunny for much of the day, though storms were to be seen. I went through St-Jean Port-Joli. I hadn't realised it was such a center for art of a folky vein. At one place there was a tour bus with Texas plates on it. I hope this wasn't the only thing the people on it had come to see!

As I was making good time, I stopped at a micro-brewery to taste their wares. Unfortunately, as I tippled it began to rain. It was a cold rain that seeped into my shirt despite my rain gear. What I didn't catch onto until much too late was that it was cooling me down dangerously. I think I was skirting hypothermia. Once I cottoned on to this, I changed into my merino shirt for near instant relief.

I arrived at the Rivière du Loup youth hostel fairly late (at little before 6). As I have been riding along the St-Lawrence, I have been seeing why the South Shore is the smart decision. There are some bloody big mountains on the other side.

I rode 114.41 km today. I have about the same tomorrow but that is the end for now. The weather forecast looks almost promising for Sunday, so I may well spend two nights in Le Bic.

As I was riding today, I thought of an expression I should have used in my post "On milestones". To quote Captain Jack Sparrow: "Bring me that horizon." That is the rush of the road.

1 comment:

Victor said...

"Bring me that horizon" - that's great and sure does describe cyclo-tourism well. Hope you're having a great trip and keep on blogging.