Gap - France
Trip Start Jan 31, 2011
71Trip End Jul 10, 2011
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Of course now that we had embarked on the slippery slope of criminality, and as we were only 100 km from the Italian border and then out of reach of the long arm of the Italian law AND that Italy had no record of the Pommie-Ducati at all (on arrival in Brindisi from the ferry we were waved through with no record kept of our bike etc) and couldn’t link it to us, we figured why not just ride through all etoll gates and be done with it. So, after another three ride throughs (are these like petrol drive offs?) we left Italy behind and said hello to the Land of the Frogs.
France being an EEC member, means there is no discernable border crossing between it and Italy, not like the old days where it was a big deal to move between countries. Now, we only know you are in France when the advertising signage is in French and the majority of the cars have French, not Italian number plates.
We decided to stay the night in the small French town of Gap. Gap is along the ancient Roman route of Via Domitia used for trade and of course for the Romans to hold their empire together. We booked into the Ibis Hotel because it was close to everything and was at a good price.
Gap was everything we hoped for; small yet large enough to provide most of what you need and of course, very beautiful. Motorbike parking was free so we were told to ride around the corner and park underneath the hotel, in a locked and secured car parking spot that they charged cars 6 Euro per day for. Since we took up a whole spot we couldn’t figure out why we got it for free and cars had to pay. But we didn’t care.
We walked around town and then found the market place filled with people sunning themselves and drinking beer and wine. What a fine idea! We sat down, ordered a tall beer each and watched the world go by. We then had a delicious steak meal, served by a waiter who was very friendly, having worked with Australians in Kosovo and learnt his English from them.
Tomorrow we decided to ride Route 85 known as 'Route Napoleon’ as it is the road Napoleon took to Paris for his failed 100 days return from exile.