poetry and prose about place

biking log book – virtual bike trip from Sanxay to Exireuil, France #1

with 9 comments

On February 12, I began the second phase of my virtual bike trip through central France.  In this phase, I plan to travel on my stationary bike from Sanxay to Exireuil, a distance of about 18 km.


One of the first features I encountered on my trip from Sanxay to the town of Mènigoute were mysterious plantations of trees.  Street View shows lines of mature hardwood trees, leafless since the photos were taken in early spring.  In the branches of the trees were green branchy spheres.

Feb 12 notebook

Feb 12 notebook showing distance travelled and Street View images, including a plantation of hardwoods with strange branchy spheres in the tree tops

I was very puzzled at first, but some thinking solved the mystery.  The spheres are of mistletoe, a hemi-parasitic plant.  Mistletoe is known for its medicinal uses and as a symbol of good luck and fertility.  Kissing under the mistletoe is a familiar Christmas tradition.  To learn more about mistletoe, and to see some photos of mistletoe plantations, see the website


Encountering a mistletoe plantation during my virtual bike trip was truly rewarding!!!!


Log Book:  February 12, 2013

Area travelled:   from ‘just west of Sanxay’ to ‘Mènigoute’

Distance:  30 minutes      3.0 km

Best view: plantation of hardwood mistletoe!  also, lilacs in bloom in Mènigoute!

Notes:  I also passed an area of archaeological interest… the Gallo-Roman ruins west of Sanxay – these include a Gallo temple, the Sanxay baths and a Roman amphitheatre. 


Distance Travelled Feb 12 : 3.0 km

Total Distance Travelled Jan 30 to Feb 12 : 17.0 km


'mistletoe plantation'


Have you ever seen a plantation of mistletoe??  


Copyright  Jane Tims  2013

Written by jane tims

February 20, 2013 at 7:23 am

9 Responses

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  1. Bravo for keeping this going. A truly creative and fun-packed approach to exercise (not to mention drawing and the use of all your self-management skills!). I love it.


    Jane Fritz

    February 21, 2013 at 10:44 am

    • Hi. I am into Phase Three of this and I am still inspired (the Blog report lags about a week behind the actual bike ride). I love doing the drawings, but don’t allow myself to draw until the bike ride has actually been done! Jane


      jane tims

      February 21, 2013 at 3:15 pm

  2. I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen living mistletoe before, although I have seen trees with spheres similar to the ones you drew. Someone working in a garden center once told me that I couldn’t buy it in the States because it was an invasive species – now I’m wondering if that’s correct or not… I wanted to decorate with real mistletoe one Christmas…


    Barbara Rodgers

    February 21, 2013 at 9:51 am

    • Hi Barbara. To me, the spheres of mistletoe resemble (superficially) the witches brooms we get in coniferous trees here. The USDA has a leaflet on mistletoe which sounds like it is grown in the US.

      Click to access fidl-147.pdf



      jane tims

      February 21, 2013 at 3:12 pm

      • Thank you for the link, Jane – it was most helpful and answered a few of my questions.


        Barbara Rodgers

        February 21, 2013 at 5:21 pm

  3. Fantastic! You are getting me motivated to ride my bike. Thank you!



    February 20, 2013 at 11:15 am

    • Hi. Great… I am glad if I have encouraged you to do some biking. I see some weeds on my ‘travels’. It is hard to identify most plants with the focus Street View provides, but sometimes I see weeds that have taken hold in an old roof, etc. I have seen Dandelion, Coltsfoot and Forget-me-not. Jane


      jane tims

      February 20, 2013 at 8:25 pm

  4. I am enjoying these travel blogs. You share places I’ve never been and bring them to life. Gary is always looking for your blogs now too. He applauds your imagination, your artistic talent and your self-discipline in finding creative ways to exercise. We both look forward to the rest of your travels.


    Carol Steel

    February 20, 2013 at 8:15 am

    • Hi Carol. I am glad you are finding this interesting. I have really learned a lot about France since I began. I can’t get over the clay roof tiles. Jane


      jane tims

      February 20, 2013 at 8:20 pm

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