Wednesday, June 21, 2006

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 21: - DAY SIX - Aosta to St Vincent 13.3km

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 21: DAY SEVEN - Aosta to St Vincent 13.3km
Sil: Ok, ok - it isn't really only 13km from Aosta to St Vincent but we have got a good excuse for our short walking day. We got up early 5h30 and had breakfast at 7am determined to walk a full 26km today. But we were also determined to post updates on our BLOG as we'd been hiking in the wilderness for 3 days and, Kathy was desperate for antihistamines for her allergies.
We had a slow walk into Aosta and were told that the INFO office had internet. Nothing opened until 9am so we sat on the pavement in the square and waited. Val and I found an open Kodak shop and were able to email photos back home for the Designer Boys to post onto our Blog.
Then back to the INFO office to use the internet but no such luck. I walked with Bernd to the INFO office who said try the Library - trudge, trudge, trudge to the other side of town. Directed up 3 flights of stairs. No such luck – you have to book in advance and there are no free computers. “Try a snooker bar close to the station” which is right on the other side of town near the station. So, trudge, trudge, trudge. Yee-haa!! Four computers- three in working order - and so we all logged on and I directed the typists so that we could post Days 2-5 in order. Back into town for lunch and we'd logged almost 10km on our digi-walkers, but hadn't left town yet.
We couldn't start our 26km walk at 13h30 and the Cryptic Clues advised against walking from Chambave to Chatillon so we got a bus to Chatillon and walked to St Vincent from there. We walked through overgrown fields of dried grasses, tall flowers, floating seed pods and fluff. Poor Kathy started to itch, then to swell, then her eyes started to water and by lunch time she could barely see out of her swollen eyes. Val has a sore throat and the start of a cold. It poured with rain on the way and is drizzling now so we are pleased we didn't start walking further back.
St Vincent is a quaint town in the Mount Zerbion foothills that boasts Europe’s largest casino. We walked besides beautiful gardens to reach the Tourism office to get directions to our B&B and said goodbye to Bernd. The landlady at the Il Tiglio B&B where we are staying is a charming hostess and introduced Marion and me to her family. Her daughter was actually born in Johannesburg 27 years ago but she hasn’t been back since they left when she was three.
The rain stopped and we decided to risk going into the old medieval town to find supper. Kathy needed to withdraw money from an ATM and we all kept an eye on her when three strange guys starting hanging around. Val kept her hand on her pepper-spray and we planned how we would rugby tackle them so that Val could spray them if they got too close to Kathy! We are starting to think like a team!
Kathy: I've realized that walking in the most beautiful fields of wild flowers can be bad for your health. Kathy has some nasty spots on her legs and terribly swollen eyes. I take part of the blame for our late start as I had to get to a Pharmacy for some allergy medication. Found an English speaking Pharmacist who was most helpful and voila - I look a little normal again. Val and I are also encouraging a really good tan by using our Arnica oil as suntan lotion, not quite bikini babes yet - socks and shorts tan line will prevent that.

Marion: Our accommodation was really good last night and we had our own kitchen so we decided to cook instead of going out. We had delicious salad and pasta and lots of good fun. Aosta is a really interesting town lots of Roman ruins, very narrow streets and lots of shops. We walked past a shop which sold fruit and veg so we all went in and stocked up with fruit. Something we have missed. It was very hot and humid today so the rain we are now having is very welcome.
Rayna: Well the terrain is finally friendly - no ravines etc. Spending time in Aosta Val and I decided the next time would be buses and empty suitcases so that we could hit the shops and kill the credit cards! However with the exchange rate it could be a while.

Val: I was very disappointed not to walk the full distance today, I would much rather have done so than have been forced to have lunch in the beautiful Italian town of Aosta! Our 1st Pizza!
I got into trouble last night trying to kill flies with my pepper spray - the table was laid, the wine open and the next moment we were all choking and had to move the entire table to the next apartment. Silvia was still stirring the pasta and had to put a dishcloth mask over her face.

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