(no photos today as the wifi here is terrible!)
Today we ‘point the nose’ in the direction of home. Our BnB in Collias has a rather Spanish hacienda feel about it and the woman who runs the place has put out a lovely spread out for our breakfast. We feel we have really completed our touring and so we are happy to take our time over breakfast.
When we leave we try to go to the local town of Uzes. We don’t have a lot of time, and it is very busy and finding a car park close to the old town ends up being too difficult. So we drive around the old city twice and briefly admire the old town built of stone…maybe next time!
Then we direct Gertie (the GPS) to lead us back up the motorway to Valence. We drive through some more Cote de Rhone vineyards until we hit the motorway, where we plant the foot. The speed limit is 130km here! It takes us about 2 hours in total, til we are back in Valence where we drop off our hire car. While the initial stages of driving were a bit ‘exciting’, in the end we got the hang of it and were glad we had the flexibility of being able to go wherever we wanted to.
An hour’s train trip and we are back in Lyon. We have an hour or so to fill in before we head back out to our friend’s place and there is a shopping centre nearby, so we leave our big bags in storage at the station and then do a spot of shopping (the first for the trip…well done!).
It is then time to catch the metro out to the suburbs where Mouna, Lina and Noa come past and pick us up and we head back to their house about 30mins away. Anthony is away in Madrid, but luckily Mouna speaks pretty good English and we have a bit of fun communicating with the kids! They have been kind to offer us a bed for our last night in Lyon.
Mouna prepares another wonderful meal even thought it is a ‘quick mid-week’ dinner. Bruschetta to start, pasta and salad and the best tiramisu I have tasted (I learn her secret so I can try and replicate at home). And while Mouna prepares dinner, Lina (who is just 11 years), decides that she wants to cook muffins for our breakfast and so without any bother just whips up a batch! We have a great night chatting and looking at photos. Noa, who is 7, keeps us entertained communicating to us via guestures..he is very funny.
We are up early to say Goodbye to Lina and Noa before they head off to school. We have another lovely breakfast of fresh fruit, chocolate muffins (the French love their chocolate…so civilized!) More chatting and then Mouna kindly drives us all the way to the central station. This family has been just so kind and helpful. We are now trying to ensure that they come to Australia at some stage so we can repay the hospitality. Anthony rang us every couple of nights to check that everything was ok and kept telling us to ring him if we had any problems!
We do a final bit of shopping before heading to the station to pick up our bags and get on the train to take us to Mulhouse. This town is in France but very close to the border with Switzerland. We were going to have the last night in Zurich but it was ridiculously expensive. So instead we are staying at a cheap hotel in Mulhouse and will then catch the train early tomorrow morning to Zurich to fly out just after lunch.
We arrive in Mulhouse about 4pm and it does not take too long to realise this is not one of those 'beautiful' French towns. It is alright though and so we still manage a walk around and even to find a decent dinner before heading back to our hotel to sort our bags out for tomorrow.
We will land in Melbourne about 10pm on Friday, so should be home by midnight. We are so excited to see Leyla, but Elaine & Andrew have advised us that they are heading to Rye for the weekend and will have Leyla with them. We consider this dog-napping...so looks like we will have to drive to Rye on Saturday to pick up our girl!