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60.jpg (14596 bytes)DAY 13, MAY 30

(MATT) We awoke around 9 a.m. and drove to Carcasserone. The Back Door mentioned it as being one of the best preserved medieval cities in Europe. Jon went to find some bathrooms and Chris, Sam, and I explored. It was a large castle with two sets of walls. Some of it had been renovated and the walls redone, but for the most part, it was original. We stayed on the outer wall almost the whole time. Pretending to shoot down at invaders and looking at the spouts that you could pour boiling oil from. At first, we were amazed that anyone would be foolish enough to attack such a fortress. It was first constructed (not the whole thing, but the first part) around 300 A.D. Charlemagne tried to take it an the 800's, but after a long siege, a woman in the castle decided to throw a fat pig over the walls, indicating that they had plenty of food so Charlemagne gave up. After climbing battlements and walls, we went inside the main walls, saw the church (pretty big with nice stained glass,) met Jon, and began walking to the car.

We drove59.jpg (13301 bytes) to Valras Plage, a small town in the Mediterranean, and found a campground. We decided to be legal that night so that we could take showers, wash clothes, and be near the beach. We found a nice place that offered all of this and more, so we took it.

(CHRIS) The lady who ran the camp was SUPER.

(MATT) We set up camp and walked to the beach. It was extremely windy. We couldn't swim, skip rocks, or play hacky sack because of the wind so we walked along 58.jpg (18307 bytes)the beach for a while. Then off in the distance in sound carried by the wind we heard what Jon thought was a soccer game, a crowd of people. So we walked over to check it out. Jon and I came upon a gate which he said was probably private, so we shouldn't go in, so I went in.

As we walked through camp, we realized it was an English speaking summer camp. We came upon a volleyball net; somebody yelled to us that a ball was probably in a little shack nearby and so we played. First game, Sam and Chris beat Jon and I. 62.jpg (13706 bytes)Then we played again. Jon and I were whooping them when a British lady came up and asked us if we were supposed to be there. We told her our story and she asked her boss who said we had to leave. It was a private camp for Brits and Aussies. She said we could stay if we worked there. I said O.K., we'll work here. She agreed but warned us that we wouldn't like it. We left happy to have had the chance to play ball. We went back to camp, showered, shaved, and Chris and Sam did laundry.

63.jpg (15967 bytes)We decided to go to town to either find food or have a drink. We found a small bar with about five people in it, all of whom seemed to work there. Had two rounds of Heiniken and played foosball. Then Chris and Sam played pool (for 10 francs) in what turned out to be the world's longest pool game. At least they got their money's worth. Then we went back to camp and slept.

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