In a slight digression from the cycling theme, today has been a special day and I'd like to share with you why. When I was 9, I went on a holiday to the Channel Islands. On the way back I threw from the ferry, a bottle with a letter inside. It read "My name is Adrian Lomas - I'm aged 9 and live in England, if you find this letter please write to me".
Three months later I received a letter from a 9-year old French girl, Emmanuelle Demeautis. She was walking her dog on Cherbourg beach and found the bottle.
We wrote for many years, at one stage we planned to meet in Tahiti when I was travelling, and she was a nurse, but for one reason and another it didn't happen.
However, with the power of Facebook, Emmanuelle spotted that I was riding the William Wates Tour De Force event which precedes the whole Tour de France by one week.
This morning, Emmanuelle left home at 7am with her daughter for a two-hour trip, to meet me for the first time on the Causeway of Mont-Saint-Michel. 34 years after we first started writing.
It was a really emotional meeting, we both know each other so well, both have families and are interested in similar things. Her father was a champion cyclist and her cousin is working with a cycling team. Emmanuelle and her husband write and illustrate books.
Now we plan to meet after the Tour finishes, when we can get to meet both families properly.