The French know how to strike…

We should be on a ferry but we are not. The power of people has spoken and not in our favour.

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Alas all it not lost, we are assured that the ferry we attempted to catch this evening (but was not running owing to the strikes) will be leaving Séte tomorrow at some unknown point. Unfortunately the ferry runs to Nador and not Tangier, adding another 500 km of unplanned cycling to our route. Thus we have taken the decision to take a train to Rabat from Nador. We made the call based on route planning issues, time and the fact that we will need lots of it in Rabat (where we need to apply and wait for our Mauritanian and Malian visas).

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Aside from the ferry problems we have been enjoying Montpellier, a colourful city with youthful energy. We wandered through the city’s narrow lanes today and hung out in the square as thousands of protestors took to the streets. Some 200 demonstrations took place across France today with around 3 million participants, an impressive and inspiring number. Families, the elderly and students were among the people marching against the pension reform bill which is likely to pass through the Senate soon and would raise the retirement age from 60 to 62. It was great to step back and appreciate the spirit of protest which is so clearly alive here, and perhaps engaged with a wider population than at home.

In between people watching and internet research (route planning) our waiting time has been spent eating, napping and generally relaxing- not too bad to be honest. With a bit of luck tomorrow the short wait will be over and our 42 hour trek from Séte to Rabat will begin.

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7 responses to “The French know how to strike…

  1. Hi guys, wow I had no idea people cycled so fast!! I thought you’d be passing Paris maybe lol… Wow @ all the pretty photos!!! Anyways, i just read youre going to Barcelona. GOOD IDEA!!! Barcelona is the place to be!!! I know lots of people there so in case Imran’s friend is unavailable this time, drop me a line and I’ll sort you out a place to stay!
    Big hugs to both of you and best of luck!!! xx

  2. I had Vero on the phone yesturday teel me you were at her place !
    Glad to see everything is doing (more or less, then) fine !

    I’m looking forward to see some new pictures and cycle reports !

    Cheers, have an awesome trip.

  3. Hi guys, yes the French are behind the pack in many ways (e.g cyber-wise), but sometimes in a good way – they’ve never let Thatcher-type forces suppress their unions and their right to throng out on the streets when they’re unhappy. Good on them! Will the same happen in the UK??? Here in Cotonou people are on the streets about the forced disappearance of a politician – a body has been found but its identity is not confirmed.
    Take care and good luck with Morocco visa hunting. love Pru xxxx

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