I pushed the bike uphill for at least an hour then had to stop for a rest, the birds were singing the sun was shining and I was feeling positive, especially as the sun was out at last. I followed the N40 throughout the day, the village and towns kept going by Libin, Recogne, Semel, I stopped just outside Neufchateau and as the sun was beating down with just a few fluffy clouds in the sky. I lay all my gear out to dry over some cut down trees at the entrance to a field a fair had recently taken place, well at least that’s what I thought the sign said. Everything was dried my tent, groundsheet, sleeping bag and mat, even my jacket, I stayed there 2 hours sorting everything out and lying in the sun.
Neufchateau was disappointing but in a nice way, I was expecting 9 fancy châteaux, if they were there I didn’t see them. The town hall was very elegant. I sat on a wall at the bottom of a long steep hill not really looking at my map just putting off the inevitable climb. I was going to have to climb it one way or another but chose the easy way and pushed the bike up. Leaving the outskirts of Neufchateau I spotted a commercial centre and managed to get another gas canister as the one I had was almost empty, a mile or two further along I came across an Aldi so stocked up on food, as I had a new gas canister I thought I would make a potato omelette. When I came out of Aldi I noticed the front chain ring had cut through the bottom of my water bottle, so had to go back in for a 1.5 ltr bottle instead of 2 ltr.
Almost next to Aldi was a picnic area, so I made potato omelette and coffee, okay more like scrambled egg and potato, it still tasted good though. I contemplated sleeping at the picnic area but it was too open and too close to the main road. I carried on for another two hours until I arrived at the village of the donkeys.