Biking Cafe Camino de Santiago Food Spain

You Can Have Your Cake and Eat It

Fresh Cream Cakes on Bicycle Handlebar
Written by Stuart Wickes

You Can Have Your Cake and Eat It

Stuart Profile SmallPeople tell you that you can’t have your cake and eat it. Well, they are wrong. When you’re cycling all day long you deserve it. You’ve earnt it. You need it. And don’t let anyone tell you different.

Who wants a sandwich?

By the time we left San Sebastian we’d had enough of sand in our sandwiches. Much as I love the beach, I hate sand in my teeth.

It wasn’t an easy escape. San Sebastian is a popular place and the sheer volume of pedestrians and traffic made getting away something of a challenge. We had planned to carry on around the coast to visit Biarritz but rumours were that was busier still, more expensive and in French.

There was no escaping France though. Our pilgrim journey was to begin in the French Pyrenees. But before the mountains, it was goodbye Spain, for now. There was one last beach to be baguetted, across the border at Saint Jean de Luz.

The beach at Saint Jean de Luz, France

The beach at Saint Jean de Luz, France

Something of an attraction

There was no band playing in the stand in the verdant Place Louis XV in Saint Jean de Luz. Instead our bikes became the main attraction. We stood aside to watch the watchers peer and prod, while we headed to one of the cafes around the square for a coffee.  At the next table we watched an elderly couple tuck into croissant and pastry and then the penny dropped. We were in France. No more insipid Spanish coffee. We were in coffee and cake heaven.

Inspecting the bikes in Place Louis XV, Saint Jean de Luz, France

Passers by stop and stare at our machines on Place Louis XV, Saint Jean de Luz

A dash for cash

We didn’t have enough cash to splash out on cake at the cafe, nor the pattisserie in town. All we could do was drool there. So, with empty stomach and heavy heart we decided to leave the coast and begin our journey inland towards the Pyrenees and the start of our pilgrimage proper. We decided our journey inland must begin with a dash for cash and a visit to a supermarche. With a bakery.

We tried asking for directions but our French wasn’t up to the job. In fact Kirstie’s use of the French word for dog instead of boy left quite a few locals thinking we were crossing the Pyrenees with two puppies and a baby. But then, heading out of town we found what we needed.

Champion Supermarket. Do you ever turn up to do your shopping like this?

Champion Supermarket. Do you ever turn up to do your shopping like this?

A well earnt cake

There is nothing that compares with the delight of fresh French pattiserie. Except perhaps fresh French pattisserie on a bike. With the amount of energy we are burning, it’s a no guilt trip. So we are working on figuring out a way to ride and eat cakes. I think it will transform our riding. At least on the French side.

Pastries on a bicycle

Pastries on a bicycle… perfect pleasure.

About the author

Stuart Wickes

Stuart's the adventure addict half of the team, always trying to persuade the family to get out, do more, go further. As co-founder and co-director he handles the business, creative, design, technical and publishing aspects of the project. He is our chief photographer and videographer. With training as a professional learning and development consultant. an engineer and musician, his contribution is eclectic and unpredictable!

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We're Kirstie & Stuart. We share an adventurous spirit, a passion for indie travel and 3 kids. The Family Adventure Project is our long term experiment in doing active, adventurous things together. Find out more...


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