125.5 km today with some climbing and a headwind.
Breakfast was amazing, lovely bread and really soft tasty cheese. There was also a porridge that was made from bread and beer, I tried it – it had the consistency of porridge but it was brown and quite strong tasting, I only ate a couple of mouthfuls. At breakfast I took a couple of photos of the riders in their 2018 Pub Ride riding top.
It is nice and warm but there is a bit of a head wind. All the riders who were calling into see Klaus and his wife Helle rode together to the point where we were meeting him, just past a big bridge a kilometre from his house. I forgot to charge my Garmin last night so have no idea how fast we are going or how many kms.
On the way we were passed by a team of men cyclists who had just set off from Copenhagen this morning to ride from Denmark to Paris, to raise funds for Child Cancer Foundations, this is an annual race. They ride an average of 200 km a day, for 6 days. They had a team car in front and back, and were all wearing sparking new yellow riding outfits. They waved and smiled as they went past. They are team Rynkeby, the largest charity cycling team in Europe. This year there will be 48 teams over 7 countries and 1,900 riders. The Ride finishes on the 7th of July in Paris. In 2016 this ride raised over €8,800,000.
Just before we met Klaus in Vordingborg we went over a bridge from one Island to the next this bridge was 4 km long and was built 1935 -37. It’s the longest bridge I have ever cycled over.
We had coffee and a Danish at Klaus and Helles place. The Danish was delicious, nothing like any Danish I have ever tasted back in NZ.
Greg did part of the South American ride, Dan did most of it, Shirley is his wife. Klaus did all of the ride and was one of 7 who rode every single kilometer (EFI – every fucking inch) – his wife Helli rides to and from work and the shops, but has no interest in riding long distance.
After the coffee and Danish we were riding as a group to lunch at 72 km. At least that was the plan. I had forgotten what a riding machine Klaus is, and after about 8 km going up a hill I was dropped, and never caught up again. Brett waited for me up the top of the hill, and by lunch only Michele had managed to stay with Klaus.
After lunch Klaus turned round to ride back home. It was great to see him and will certainly catch up with him if I am here again. There are 406 islands in Denmark and we are only seeing 3 islands.
There are still lots of thatched roofs here but they have wood along the top. Just before lunch we saw a big old house with a thatched roof with the wood up the top that was built in 1825. Things have changed a lot since it was built – it was probably farm area, now it is quite a built up area, complete with supermarket across the road.After lunch we still had the headwinds but only a couple of small hills, but it was getting very hot – up to 28 degrees. At 20 km before Copenhagen we stopped at a beach. Even with the wind a number of the locals were swimming and picnicking.From about 30 km from Copenhagen we had trucks playing loud music, filled with young people wearing white peaked hats and some wearing sailor type uniforms, coming past us tooting and waving to everyone. They were drinking and leaning out of the trucks but they seemed very friendly. We weren’t sure if it was a protest or possibly gay pride parade, will certainly be googling. Getting into Copenhagen was pretty straight forward as there were bike paths the whole way. The traffic light sequence was a bit annoying for a few km as you would stop at one and by the time you got to the next that would red. I was starting to think that this would be another long drawn out process but thankfully a couple of km later we were done with lights for awhile.
The only other problem getting to the hotel was watching out for train and tram tracks, plus not long before the hotel the notes said go left at the bronze horse statue, but there was another bronze horse statue 300 metres away – that was the correct one. Easily sorted and we arrived in front of the hotel, 2620 km later and 2018 Pub Ride is over.
Esther was over the road with bubbles, we went over and had a glass and spoke to a couple of the other riders. Miles from TDA head office was there as well. Was great to have a catch up with Miles, he was the chef on the 2012 Trans Europa ride – Russia to Portugal.
For those of you who have been reading my blogs for a long time you may recall Miles was badly bitten by a dog early on in the ride, at a camp that was then renamed Dog Bite Camp and had to leave us for a week till he could resume cooking. Miles has come from Turkey where his wife was born and his in-laws still live, and is going to drive one of the trucks back to Slovenia.
The Trans Europa has been changed this year from Helsinki because of the issues riders have getting a VISA to Russia. You can only apply 90 days before, and you have to list the name of every place you are staying and when. When I did it my application was declined initially and I was worried I would run out of time, and numerous other riders have had issues.
One of the riders Dean had a nasty fall hitting the kerb the wrong way 20 km before the end of the ride, and his face is all grazed and he needed a number of stitches. Luckily one of the other riders Gordon is an ED Doctor from Canada and had bought his first aid kit which included suture material. It looks pretty uncomfortable.
Michele also came off her bike hitting a kerb on the wrong angle yesterday about 300 metres from the hotel. Overall thankfully injuries have been limited this trip to grazes, bruises (tandem rider Greg) and cracked ribs (Bob who left in London).
We are staying at the hotel Strand by a canal. We have a lovely room because we upgraded tonight so we can stay in the room, we have booked for the next two nights. It’s very spacious and has two big windows looking out onto to the canal.Next step is getting the bikes packed up, Brett very kindly did his as well as mine . We have a small entrance way area into the room which is perfect for two bike boxes.
Initially the plan was to meet in the hotel lobby at 7pm and walk together for the “End of tour dinner” to a restaurant in town. This was changed to 6:30pm to meet down stairs and have a group photo over the road. Michele and Tony weren’t there and we tried to get Gergo and Eszter to wait to take the photo. We had rung them and they had said they were on their way down. Unfortunately Esther and Gergo chose not to. Michele and Tony were understandably a bit upset, especially as the change in time hadn’t been communicated to them as they got to the hotel before the change was made on the whiteboard. Frustrating haven ridden 5 weeks not to get into the group finished photo.Dinner was at Bar Jakobson at Illum rooftop. We were in an enclosed area, covered in glass which was initially a bit hot and the sun was in a few people’s eyes. A couple of riders quickly cottoned on to moving the big pot plants as required as the sun moved.
We sat with Rhonda, Miles, Shirley, Dan, Michele and Tony. We didn’t end up having any wine as two Jacobsen beers came with the meal. The starter was a range of platters with bread, cheese, gherkins, pate and cured meat. The vegans and vegetarians had their own platters full of delicious options, and the other platters were shared. There was plenty to go round.
The main was a cheese and parsley sauce, pork crackling, fried pork chops, all served on large platters. The pork was very hard and dry looking, and I was not keen. I was looking with food envy at Rhonda’s salmon and vegetables (Rhonda doesn’t eat pork). Luckily there was an extra salmon that was being sent back to the kitchen, and I managed to get a Gergo’s attention and say I would have it. Dessert was coffee and chocolate buttons.
Some of the riders are heading off to other places now the ride is over. Rhonda is heading off in a couple of days to Iceland for a few days, Joe and Dean are going on a cruise, Judy and Tim are going a cruise that revisits a number of the places that we have been on this trip.
After dinner we spent a while saying goodbye to riders leaving the next morning, and then a group of us (Bruce, Becky, Tim, Judy, Miles, Catalin, and Brad and his girlfriend who had just flown in to join him today) headed off into the town centre. We came across a bar called The Dubliner, which we thought having a drink here would be a fitting end to the ride as we started this ride in Dublin.
There was a soccer game on – Denmark playing against Croatia. There was lots of cheering and shouting, and also groaning – a very subdued crowd when the game ended 1:1 and Denmark are now out of the competition.
We were pretty tired so after a drink we headed back to the hotel. Yay sleep in tomorrow.