Today we were heading deeper into France, to the little village where our friends' party would be held the following day. I managed one last swim before checkout.
Our first stop was the Plan Incliné de Saint-Louis Arzviller, a lift that allows canal boats passage through the Vosges Mountains, replacing 17 locks. We were lucky enough to see it in action, raising a boatload of tourists before our very eyes.
After coffee, it was time to press on. We chose to avoid tolls, so the route was a mix of motorway, dual carriageway and straight, almost empty country roads. My fly-by treat for the day was a Mirage 2000 fighter, spotted near a French air base.
"No, when was that?" said Howard when I asked later if he'd seen it.
"When I slowed down for no apparent reason."
"I should remember to check the sky when that happens."
We arrived at half-past five, precisely when we'd said we would. Our friends had very kindly offered us a room, and I was allowed to unpack and change before their daughter whisked me off to inspect her treehouse.
Other guests had arrived, or were arriving. We had a tour of the village, which took about 20 minutes, then ate pizzas outside in the dusk before bed.
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