I had a dilemma of sorts, but a good one: To get to Figeac, should I take the road along the Lot River or the road along the Cele River? When in doubt, I did what more and more people do: I asked people I only know through social media, or, in this case, a Facebook page devoted to people who love cycling in France. You know, people like me. I’ll let them decide. They’ll know.
Two people responded. Gert recommended the Cele for the scenery and quietness, while Lorraine wrote: “I would definitely go via the Célé. Did it in May. Absolutely superb!”
That settled it, I’m taking the Cele River route along the D41 all the way to Figeac. You can’t go wrong either way, so why not go with Gert and Lorraine.
Another dilemma: How the heck do you pronounce Figeac? So many possibilities.
Gert and Lorraine were right, thank you, and here are a few photos along the D41, followed by an interesting issue I had finding my hotel here in Figeac…
Let’s hope this video works…
I had no problem finding and following the signs to the center of Figeac, and stopped and pulled out my iPhone and took a look at the screen shot I’d taken the night before of where the Hotel Le Quatorze is located.
OK, follow the D813 – that’s easy, I’m already on the D813 – right along the river, bear to the left and make a left onto the road at the big intersection, which turned out to be the Rue Emille Zola. Look for the Chez Celia, there it is! I’m almost there, it should be right up here … except it wasn’t. Maybe it’s on the street to the right of where Google maps says it is, the Rue de Claux. I went around to that street. Nope. Maybe I rode past it on Emille Zola. Nope. Maybe it’s further along Zola. Nope.
Maybe the hotel has up and vanished and I can do a podcast on this amazing disappearance. Google maps can’t be wrong, can it?
I rode around and around some more, through the narrow, windy streets of Figeac, and finally saw a sign for the Tourist Office. Found it … and it’s closed on Sunday afternoons. Well that’s not good.
I don’t have data over here and can only use wifi at my hotels. So, you can see the Catch-22 situation I was in. But, you can call up emails you’ve already opened, which I did, and found the confirmation email from hotels.com. It said the Hotel Le Quatorze is located at 14 Place de l’Estang. I hope they know better than Google maps.
Maybe I can ask someone where is the Place de l’Estang. There’s a bunch of people around, someone has to speak English. But wait, over there, on the wall, there’s a large map of Figeac! With an index at the bottom that listed the Place de l’Estang. It’s at E7 on the map. Found it. It’s not far from here. Only a few streets away. I took a photo of the map, because, well, I can only remember one turn and getting there required three … and found it. FYI: This is how we found places, like youth hostels and hotels and train station back in the 80s and 90s. I think we may all be a little too reliant on our devices and have lost the ability to find things on our own.
BTW: Susan says you can contact Google maps and tell them when they get something wrong. But that seems like a lot of work, and maybe something the people at this hotel should do.
As I rode back by the tourist office I saw … a laverie. And a pizza place. Perfect, the rest of my day is set: do laundry and pizza for dinner.
FYI: This hotel is so nice (a walk-in shower, teapot and super-thick towels) that I’m staying a second night, and will probably do a ride back along the Lot River tomorrow. Unless the internet tells me otherwise.