We bicycled into Homps for breakfast items this morning, and then spent the day cruising on the beautiful, tree-lined canal and navigating through the locks, which we always looked forward to. Mike seemed to be a natural as our barge pilot, while Dave and I fell into the role of crew members at each set of locks, handling the ropes and stabilizing the barge while the roaring water filled up each lock chamber on our ascent up the canal. We entered into each set of locks with pretty much the same group of three other barges each time, which was kind of fun, since we ended up chatting and getting to know a little bit about each other. Many of the lock keepers displayed some local foods and/or wines and/or art which was always fun to check out while we were waiting our turn in the locks. Today we bought a bottle of a sweet white wine called Prélude, which we immediately put into the refrigerator so it would be nice and chilled for tonight’s apéritif. When the locks closed up at 7:00pm, we found a nice spot to moor the barge for the night just outside the village of Trèbes. We hopped onto our bicycles and rode into the village of Trèbes, and we immediately ran into our friends, AC/DC (Allan and Diana Colby), while they were strolling along the canal. The five of us headed back to Laurens (our barge), and I gave AC/DC a tour of our floating home, while Dave and Mike put together tonight’s dinner of lamb daube, which required a couple of hours of cooking. We then opened up the perfectly chilled bottle of sweet and spicy Prélude that went very well with some smoked almonds served up on the flying bridge (top deck). Our lamb daube dinner turned out amazingly delicious. Mike and Dave added some carrots, spicy luque olives, red wine, and water, to the sautéed gigot of lamb that the butcher had cut up into chunks this morning. They simmered it on top of the stove for a couple of hours, and then served it over Camargue rice. It was simple and absolutely delicious, served with a local Corbières wine.