Monday, 10 September 2007

Days 22 – 24 Fresne le Chateau – Gy – 10km

From here Paul takes over and lays down the law - we have got to sort this out – and because, for once I am not in a fit state to argue, we cycle 9km to Gy where there is a hotel and a doctor who finds it hard to get his head round what I am telling him (this time it isn’t my crap French at fault, because he actually assumes from my accent that I am Belgian).

Doctor: So, let me get this clear, you are cycling to Rome.
Me: Yes.
Doctor: And you started to feel ill when?
Me: Erm, not sure, it might have been a few weeks ago, when we were in Montreux maybe …
Doctor: You cycled there?
Me: No, that was when we hired the car to drive down for the festival …
Doctor: Festival?
Me: Yeh, the jazz one , anyway I had some symptoms then, but by the time we were cycling again they had kind of gone away, so I assumed … and progress was so good so I thought … you know how it is.
Doctor: Not really, but what about an address for the results of the analysis? You will need to give them to your doctor if the infection is resistant to the antibiotics. Where can we send them? Me: Mmm … difficult … I suppose you could send them home, but then again I wouldn’t get them until I got back.
Doctor: Which is when?
Me: Phew, don’t know really. Mid-October, maybe.

Not an easy exchange,but ultimately we reach an agreement that I have a kidney infection, need a course of antibiotics and rest.

Now, after two days I can say that I am on the road to recovery (though still having difficulty equating two tiny pills a day with such a miraculous reversal) and should be literally on the road again tomorrow, so everything is back to normal. Well, almost, the only downside to the effect of the antibiotics is that they make my skin photosensitive, meaning I will have to wear the equivalent of a burkha for the next ten days – not an easy thing to do on a bicycle - but then again as it is currently pouring with rain, again, perhaps this will be the least of my problems.

Gy (does anyone know another 2 letter town and not an abbreviation?) rests at the foot of les Monts de Gy and has the vital doctor, a hotel, campsite and all the basic amenities. With Babette confirmed as having a major infection we now have the tough decision of when it is safe to go on. The course of antibiotics last for 10 days and the doctor has advised immediate rest. After 2 days Babette is clearly on the mend (teeth unclenched, reading voraciously and worrying about washing clothes), but how do I judge it safe to proceed? The next few days lead us up and up climbing to 1000 metres before we reach the Swiss border. I have taken some of the slack time to explore the next section and have confirmed that there is a hotel just 20 km ahead and so we will take it gently tomorrow and bale-out if the babbling stops. We are staying in the lovely (dare I admit) 3 star Hotel Pinnocchio that has provided the nicest surroundings so far at just over 2 star pricing (69 Euros for a double) .

For the fourth time so far we are finding the VF is sharing territory with a tributary of the St James Way, the blue and yellow sign can be seen on all the street corners near the church. This not only brings into contrast again the absence of signs on the VF, but also raises the question of why the supporters of the VF and the St James Way can’t do a better job of teaming up in the areas of common interest.

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