I drove up to the Col de La Chassenoud in the Pilat Park on Sunday and after trekking up a lovely woodland track for an hour, arrived at a tiny locked chapel that was the summit of the creatively named Mont Monnet. What’s more there was a panoramic viewing board that explained all the features I was looking at: primarily the Rhone valley, with Lyon on the far left, Annonay on the far right and a lot of fog, haze and industrial pollution in between. There was also a plaque on a rock that said you could see Mont Blanc on a clear day.
Hang on, I thought, haven’t I been here before…
My mind whirred into action for the first time that weekend. I have very little recollection of my week to week movements in Lyon. Time and events move quickly and by the end of each month all the weeks are one. It’s why I write this blog.
The last time I was here, I’d walked down from the Col du Pavezin which is in the next valley and had a coffee in the Auberge which I could now see at the bottom of the track to my right.
When I set out from Col de La Chassenoud on Sunday lunchtime I didn’t really know where I was going. Just a walk. But now I knew. I’d be taking a coffee in the Auberge like last year and then heading back along the road to Rellieux where I’d no doubt get my feet bitten by the three one-foot-high yappy dogs. Then I’d head up through the wild flower meadows and left at the fork in the track that leads back to the car park.
When I arrived back home I felt disenchanted that the walk hadn’t taken me to some unknown mysterious place. I had in effect just trodden over old ground leaving me with little to write about. Perhaps this is what happens as you get older. You simply repeat the same boring journey year after year.
Point being. I’ve realised that my blog serves as a useful reminder of my time here. Without it, I would have of course remembered things: events, days, outings, and the like. But not in any great detail or order. Just fragments of memories randomly thrown across a calendar like dice in a casino.
For the first time in my life, I actually possess a solid record of an eighteen month period of my life. And it has actually encouraged me to keep writing it when I admit my enthusiasm has recently waned.
If nothing else, it should stop me going to places I’ve already visited.