Day 14: Maljasett

8h 45m of hiking.  First col had a funny name of Col Fromage.  Have not noticed any cheesiness in it!  The views were great.  Then got down into the valley and the town of Ceilac where I listened to an interesting church bell performance around noon. 

Then again up the col, passing by two beautiful mountain lakes which are popular with the local hikers. 

The second col was very high (over 2700m) - the second highest on the route.  No hikers there. 

And then it was a steep descent into another valley and the village of Maljasset. It is just a hamlet with less than a dozen stone buildings. 

There is no cell phone coverage here.  When people on the trail talk to me in French and hear my standard answer: "I am sorry, I don’t speak French", they say: "Ah, Italiano..." 

This leads me to the yesterday's dinner where I could discuss various subjects with one Italian guy who spoke English.  With the other one I also had fine dialogs in Italian.  He would ask:
Day 14 - Maljasset -Pesce? (More fish?)
- Si. (And I would pass my plate.) After getting the plate back we would exchange:
- Grazie.
- Prego.

Or he would ask:  Aqua?  And the dialog would be recycled.

Day 14 - Maljasset 2 I am staying at the refuge.  It is full so it was a good idea to make a reservation in advance.  So I again asked the gardienne a favor to make the reservation for me in Larche for tomorrow.  I possibly have only two days left of hiking.  If I will do the 12 hour hike the day after tomorrow, I will reach a town with a bus connection to Nice.

Day 14 - Organized Group Arrived At the dinner table I had a French couple from Briancon where I stayed two days ago.  They are doing a 6 day loop.  Two young Italian guys from just over the border are hiking with two horses which carry their luggage.  The third Italian is hiking by himself along the GR5.  He was the translator from all three languages.  What was for dinner tonight?  Soup, Fried Ham, Rice, then unexpectedly Salad with a slice of Camembert cheese and Ice Cream for dessert.  And at the end the Italians insisted that everybody had a tiny shot of genepi (not sure how to spell it) for a good sleep.  It is an alcoholic beverage made of mountain flowers and sugar.