Once again I sit in good ole Mac Donalds. It seems to have become our American embassy. I mean honestly, being American, I reckon we pretty much own this place.
Things I've noticed about France...
1. No fat people... it's amazing to walk around in a country full of people that actually respect their bodies.
2. No big cars... The law of demand is real. When gas is $7 a gallon and streets are tight, there is a need for small, fuel efficient cars. Think your Prius has good gas mileage? Think again my friend... the Peugeot 207 SW gets 60 MPG on diesel, and it actually has unbelievable "get up and go". I guess there is the problem of windows that aren't sufficiently large enough to support those 3' x 3' Mossy Oak stickers....
3. Beer at McDonalds... enough said.
4. The wine is cheap and amazing, and so is the bread.
5. French people are not snooty, stuck up, or pompous. At least not any more than Americans. Are there a few d-bags around? Sure... But where aren't there?
6. Fontainebleau is enormous. 50+ areas, and a lot of them are comparable to HP40 in size and quality.
7. It's really cool how international Fontainebleau is. While sitting in one of the main areas at Font (Bas Cuvier) it's not unusual to hear 4 or 5 different languages around you... and none of them English.
We've been staying in a cozy 6 person gite (house), that is completely full with people excited to go rock climbing. We wake up, discuss where to go climbing, and go. A good life to say the least. We've been blessed with a few (NOTE: FEW) good climbing days, but things are looking up. The snow has finally melted, and things might start drying up.
I love Europe. I like the pace, the scenery, the people walking down the streets in their little towns holding giant baguettes. I like wearing bright colors here, and feeling peoples eyes as they look at my strongly colored attire. I like driving a small car, on small streets, through towns older than America.
We arrived in Paris at 8:30 in the morning, picked up our car from Peugeot, and drove straight into town to some climbing shops we had already researched. After a successful mission of finding the 7 + 8 guidebook for Font we shifted into high gear and raced to Fontainebleau. Since it was pretty late and we had been up for 24 hours, we decided to go grab a sandwich and a couple of beers instead of trying to climb. Looking out the window of the Tabac (tobacco shop/ bar/ sandwich shop/ old creepy men hangout) we noticed it was dumping. Snow. And lots of it.
The car getting dumped on.
This isn't good....
We hopped in the car, and the 25 minute drive to the campsite turned into a hour and a half slip and slide fest. Hooray.
The road in front of us... oh boy.
And behind. Notice the Police car. He stopped and kindly said, "good luck!"
5:30 AM and I couldn't sleep. Why not play with my camera?
Now we wait, in McDonalds (free wifi in Europe), for the snow to melt so that we can get on the sandstone. I am itching to climb, it's been 27 days since I've gotten my feet off the ground. We went out to Bas Cuvier about an hour ago, and I ran into some Brits I met in Hueco. Small world eh? They were brushing snow off the tops of some of the boulders, so maybe we will be able to climb tomorrow. Cross your fingers for us.
Go this way.
Oh wait, we cant. It's frozen.
Why are you smiling Alex???? This isn't cool...
That's more like it... Negativity!!
Tree with snow on it. I guess I didn't need to tell you that though.
So if you haven't already guessed it, I am psyched. I'm leaving a week from today for what will be the only extended road trip I will probably ever have... Holy guacamole.
I've been quite the lazy bass-tard as of late, doing little to ZERO climbing since Hueco Tanks. Oh wait, I did go out with my best buddy Sean D. to a new hot spot bouldering mecca in Bartlesville Okla-friggen-homa. It was quite the scene. After 45 minutes of treacherous hiking through mud and crossing a near frozen river, we came came to the ultra-mega classic of the ENTIRE area. A v0/1/2/3 that proved to live up to the hype. On my first go the most obvious foothold shattered. Sick. I managed to capture the forth ascent in only a few more goes. Thats right boss. Buy your plane tickets friends, I can't say enough about the area.
I also went skiing in Salt Lake City, Utah. Oh my god I love skiing. Second to climbing for sure. I had never been, but it was undeniably amazing. I went with my parents, and they graciously paid for everything. I could never afford all that jazz, I couldn't believe how expensive everything was.
Now I'm back. I just got a new camera (for documentation purposes), and I've almost read the entire manual for your picture viewing pleasure. Look foward to many marginal pictures in the future.
Idea: I threw this at Alex last night. We are going to be making TONS of videos for our own egotistical purposes over the next 6 months. Would you like to see more culture and other crap thrown in other than the regular boulder problem after boulder problem after boulder problem. I honestly get tired of the 15-boulder-problems-in-a-row-format (which I am also guilty of).