End of Day 61, 62, 63 & 64
Eight hours on the train flew by as we actually had some decent company. Wine was drunk, adventure books read and given away and we almost were able to convince our new friends to come and join us in Toulouse. However they hopped off two hours before the end and left us to ride the rest of the way by ourselves.
Arriving in Toulouse at 8pm we were worried we would struggle once again to find accommodation. Our fears seemed to be true as the first 4 places we went to were completely booked. But then we got lucky finding the last 2 rooms in a hotel. Whilst it was a bit pricey we would soon find out it would be worth every cent.
From suffering in the baggage hold to going into these rooms our day had certainly turned around. Comfortable beds, Plasma Tvs, aircon and to top it all off, sweets on the pillow. We were pumped. We absorbed some comfort in our rooms for a while before heading out, looking for something to eat after our short train without food became 8 hours long. Coming across a Sushi place, we had no second thoughts about sitting down, all of us craving Tenka since we had left.
Soon after, we headed further into town to see what Toulouse offered in the way of nightlife. Having no idea where to go we simply headed in a direction where at each crossroad someone decided which way to turn. Some time had passed before we found ourselves in any location worth remembering. Finding two bars we split up to check out which was better.
Finding the one bar packed beyond any chance of entry, Az and I attempted to find the others at our agreed meeting spot. As they were nowhere to be seen we headed towards their bar finding them sharing drinks with some people they had met. Within 10 minutes they had met people, sat down with them and scored some free cocktails and shots. Us being the kind of people never to turn down something free, sat down and joined them. It was then the night truly began.
After chatting for quite some time meeting the couple and their very flamboyant friend, wine was brought out and we all sat around sipping some Rosè . As the bar was getting quiet and the people we were with weren't exactly sober we headed out making our way with them to what they claimed was an amazing club. And so we walked. And walked. and walked for what must of taken the better part of an hour. Eventually we got there and we didn't know what to say. We were outside a Tex Mex.
Whilst initially we were really confused our friends assured us it was good and we followed them in. Once in, it looked just like a typical restaurant, except for the fact it was very full at 1am. As we walked into the back area past all the tables we finally understood what they were talking about. There, a room opened up into this massive club with a bar and DJ to match. Only problem was the lack of people. Whilst on any other night this seems like the place to be. It seemed tonight just wasn't the night. After a bit of dancing and a tabasco eating contest the night kinda died. We eventually said our goodbyes and made our way home but it was a really good start to our last French city.
The next morning we made our way into town, following advice of others on where to find cheap food. Whilst it was on the other side of the city, after the amount we had spent on accommodation we were okay with that. Whilst our search for food proved fruitless, we managed to find an awesome park tricked out with chickens, waterfalls, a treehouse and a massive fountain. However stomachs were grumbling and thus we couldn't stay long, walking all the way back into the city to find anything to eat.
Whilst the other boys found a restaurant to eat at, Az and I stuck to the shnora path and found some cheap sandwiches nearby. As we walked through the streets we also came across bikes you could hire and jumped at the idea. We took a ride around the city, exploring everything there was to do including including the juggling store and the sports park along the water.
By six we were all ridden out and headed home, meeting the other guys there. After a bit of a chill, we headed out to an Irish Pub down the road, hoping to catch a bit of the Ireland France game in the rugby capital of France. We were in luck, the pub was packed with people and we managed to watch the second half of a close game. With France just winning and everyone on edge right until the end it was awesome to be watching in amongst the fans.
From there we headed towards the river, to St Pierre Place, a popular area for students to chill and drink and man were they out in force. With people everywhere we just sat down along the river and had a bit to drink. Soon after people started chatting to us and we had a great time. We even managed to meet a girl who is planning to go to St Ives next month to work. It was a freaky coincidence.
We soon made our way to a bar on the other side of town led their by a group of girls we had just met. They took us to a place which translated into "Frog and Roast Beef" which even brewed it's own beer. After a couple drinks more we moved on, back to the side of town we were originally on. Whilst we moaned the entire walk there, once we made it to the club, Studio 1, it was definitely worth the walk. With couches everywhere, amazing lights and a somewhat good DJ, the club went off.
By 4am the place had peaked and we started our journey home. Realizing it was quite a walk we hired bikes again (as it's free for less than 30 mins) but had rush home once we were delayed after a brief altercation. We walked in at about 530 and all headed straight to bed.
Day 3 started off really slow with a 11am wake up by some and a 2pm wake up from others. As we were deciding what to do with the remaining part of day, the clouds decided to open up ruining any chance of something good taking place.
Everyone just decided they would do their own thing for the day. Gav headed out to watch some Man United game at the pub, Zac and Aid decided to have a bit of a fitness sesh, Azza caught up with some peeps from back home and I went for a ride around the city in the rain making sure to change bikes every half an hour to avoid paying for it.
We all met back at dinner time, (yes we did very little with our day) and headed out to our favourite restaurant chain, Hippopotomas, for our final meal in France. Throughout France we have been to this place about 6 different times, ordering the same thing every time, abusing their unlimited sides policy and absolutely loving it.
Tired from our daily outing, we really didn't do much that evening either. We abused our free bike policy a bit more, toured the town a bit but that was all. We had an early one knowing we had a long day of travelling ahead of us.
That brings us to today in which we have literally not been off trains. We used our late check out policy sleeping all the way to 12pm before heading out to the shopping centre to stock up on supplies for the next 24 hours. Whilst my purchases mainly consisted of pringles, Oreos, poppers and muesli bars, parents should be glad to know, it also had bananas and yougurts.
We caught the four hour train from Toulouse to Biarritz at which we had a 4 hour stop over. We filled the time by looking for a restaurant (which were all closed due to a bank holiday), playing on a jungle gym which ironically was train shaped and getting into some intense handball at the train station. From there we caught train number 2 of 4 to Irun, taking us officially out of France and into Spain.
Now, as I finish this off at 11:30 at night we are on the big train for the day, the 10 hour trek all the way to Portugal. We farewell Zac and Aidan at the end of the train as they move ahead of us meeting us back in Spain for the tomato festival. As I haven't had a proper meal all day and I hear their is a food carriage on this train, I must say goodbye, wrapping up the last blog from France on this trip.
Terry Stofil loving your blog. Keep them coming and travel safe. Tezza