The day starts off all sunny and lazy. I turn to Neda in bed and ask, "Are you ready to hit the road today?"
"No, not really", came the sheepish reply.
"Okay, I'll go book us another night". I pull on some pants and get ready to go downstairs to reception.
"Wait, wait. We should go. We can't stay here forever."
Yep. We have an endpoint in sight and this isn't it. We know we want to end up in Thailand for the winter. Neda wants to go right now, but I'm feeling like there's still a bit more warm weather left in this part of the world, and I'm trying to squeeze every little bit out of it before we leave.
Despite the fact that these days we're dragging our feet every morning to climb back onto the motorcycles...
Bikes are packed once again and we're ready to continue... with maybe a little bit of reluctance
We stop to gas up before leaving Porticcio. This guy wanted a fill-up as well...
The road leads us away from the coast and into the mountains of Corse-Du-Sud (Southern Department of Corsica)
The rocks here aren't as orangey-red as yesterday, but the road is still entertaining enough as it winds through the mountains. As we round one of the corners, we're greeted with a cloud of smoke. Is there some kind of forest fire up ahead? We come up fast behind this car, billowing smoke behind it. The driver seems oblivious to the thick haze he's leaving in his wake. I think his engine's on fire!
I pull up beside the car and start honking my horn, pointing to the front of his car. He doesn't know what I'm gesticulating at. I then point at the smoke screen behind us and he glances at his rear view mirror (probably for the very first time) and then he gets it.
We pull over, but he doesn't seem to know what to do.
I ask him to pop the hood. No fire, so obviously a coolant leak somewhere. Between the two of us, we have a little bit of water to fill the reservoir
He's lost a lot of coolant, so I try to explain in my broken French that he needs to top it up as soon as possible. "Oui! Oui!" I'm still not sure he understood as we waved goodbye to him at the side of the road, waiting for his engine to cool down.
There's a break in the mountains where we can see the coast below, so we stop for a scenic peek. Other motorists stop for peek at our bikes.
Ah, the orange rocks are back again
More twisty roads in Southern Corsica
It only takes us a couple more hours to arrive at the southern tip of the island. We enter the town of Bonifacio and are greeted by the tall walls of its citadel, made out of that same rock that we've ridden through in the last couple of days.
Parking the bikes to do some exploring. The palm trees are so very Mediterranean!
Old Medieval buildings line the shores of the harbour, and you can see the citadel overlooking the waters
After walking around the marina, we hopped back onto the bikes and rode right up into the citadel
Free motorcycle parking inside the citadel! I love Europe! Riding all over town beats hiking all over town...
We walk around the top of the walls, looking down into the town and the waters of the Mediterranean Sea.
Sailboats floating around the Bay of Bonifacio
Walking past the citadel church towards one of the old fort towers on the wall
Monument of the Foreign Legion - This is a monument to the French soldiers
who died fighting the war in Algeria in 1870
The terra cotta roofs of the surrounding buildings are another reminder that we're in the Mediterranean. Neda says it reminds her of the buildings along the Dalmatian coast in Croatia. We looked for an amphitheater all over town, but none to be found.
No matter, it wouldn't have been as nice as the one in Pula, anyway...
Limestone cliffs are a famous feature of Corsica. At the bottom of the cliffs are caves that can only be explored by boat
We walk down into the old city of Bonifacio. The narrow cobblestone streets that see so many tourists during the summer, now mutely echo our lone footsteps as we wander around the deserted town. Some of the shops display the Corsican flag, the profile of a black head with a white bandana over the forehead. This symbol is called "La Testa di Moru" (The Moor's Head) and is the symbol for freedom, because originally the bandana was covering the eyes, like a blindfold.
"Treat yo'self!" A rare occasion where we splurge for a nice seafood meal!
I've been doing quite well, surviving on a diet of sandwiches and camp-cooked meals for the last few days. There's still some post-UK weight I'm holding onto around the waist, but that doesn't stop us from treating ourselves once in a while! :)
After lunch, riding past the walls of the city
We are on our way out of Corsica, heading to the ferry docks in Bonifacio
In line, waiting for the ferry
Our journey south continues!