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franklin county times

Day 3-5: Andy and Eric meet the French

By By Chris Whitaker / staff writer
June 4, 2002
Andy Armstrong, 58, and his grandson Eric, 15, have traveled nearly 200 miles from Paris, France. They are now in the northern part of France, in Enghien, where Armstrong is sunburned badly.
Andy thought it was time to wash clothes on Monday. He said the weather has been good but humid. They have traveled about 40 miles a day on small roads with little traffic, and Armstrong said the people are "unbelievable." A man named Claude Ducornet invited them into their house for orange juice and iced tea.
Armstrong said Claude and his wife are school teachers; coincidentally, Andy is a retired history teacher. Claude's 20-year-old twin boys asked if Andy and Eric wanted to e-mail anyone.
Another man, Phillipe, directed them to a hotel and restaurant called Chez Ahmed.
Andy said someone from the restaurant brought him a cell phone during the meal; it was Phillipe calling to make sure he and Eric made it safely to the hotel.
Andy said they came across their first highlight of the trip riding down a road when he felt a breeze coming from the bushes. They peeked through the bushes to find a 20-foot by 30-foot cave.
Andy said they say saw groups of 20 automobile on the road for the next couple of hours.
Eric was shocked to learn that passports are not checked when crossing country borders he had been hoping to have his stamped.
Eric had his first accident when he ran off the road onto a low shoulder, and his bike flipped when he tried to get back on.