Blogger Wants To Be Drinking Wine And Nibbling Cheese At A French Village Cafe
I have a vision, and it is of me being in a small French village in the countryside or the Alps, sitting outside at a cafe table – one of those tiny round ones, with narrow chairs made of wood – with a plate of cheese and a glass of wine in front of me.
At any moment, a large group of athletes in spandex will “whoosh” by me riding bicycles. I will put down a slice of the cheese, sit back in my chair and soak in the scene. And the moment.
Then, after a few packs of riders have passed, I’ll lean forward, grab my glass of wine and hold it up as a toast to others around me. After finishing, I’ll jump on my bike and pedal a far less arduous route to the next village, where I’ll do it all over again.
In my vision, I am at the Tour de France.
This is one of the true part bucket list items of my life. I love riding bikes – along the beach, through the countryside, even prefer it to driving in cities though dodging cars and buses is not such a thrill – and do to so in France seems a fine way to spend some time. Add to it a major event and it seems a match made in party heaven.
Oh, it’s not a party heaven like, say, Paradise Beach in July. But a more subtle one that involves lots of great wine, sophisticated socializing and a bit of exercise.
I’m not actually sure how spectating for the Tour de France works, if it’s even possible to “cafe hop” from village to village. But that’s what I need to go find out, right!? I do know that spectators sit out on the big hills, spreading out blankets with food and wine, the ultimate outdoor picnic if ever there was one.
I also know from attending a similar event, the Tour de California, in the Southern California mountain towns of Big Bear and Mt. Baldy, that people line the streets – some crazy people even chase the bikes for a few yards while draped in flags or dressed in costume – and that many are of them get their on their own bikes.
It’s all a very casual setting, something more akin to walking up to the court of a beach volleyball tournament. You can get right on the edge of the playing field and there’s no usher to check your tickets, because there is no ticket. Sports as it should be, I say.
The last day of the Tour de France is a party in Paris, taking place at the Champs-Elysees. What an ending, I envision, to a bucket list event.
Á votre santé!