Posts Tagged With: Supplies

Day 14: Sunday 27 Nov – rest day in Wellington

Despite getting to bed late I was wide awake at 6am. I got up and enjoyed being able to make a cup of tea. I decided to catch up with the blog as I had not done any updates since I left Napier and I like to keep at least a couple of days in front of Editor Kelly.

Brett went off to the supermarket and got some toast bread, butter, and milk, – we already had some marmalade. After doing a couple of updates I went up the road to have coffee with couple of friends Delwyn and Pat who live in Mt Victoria. Then went back to meet my daughter Tracey and grandson Jasper (nearly 5 months old) at mid day.

We went to lunch in Island Bay at a place called Brew’d, I had a very nice Kereru Pilsner and beer battered fish and chips. Jasper was full of smiles and chortles and generally was finding life very amusing.

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Fish’n’Chips for Gran, a bobble for Jasper Jet

After lunch I went back to the hotel, and Michele and Tony were in the unit next door so they came over to meet Jasper. Tracey had gone to catch up with a friend and her children, but I persuaded her to leave Jasper with me.

At 5pm Tracey picked me up, along with Brett and Sue, and took us to eldest daughter Kelly’s house for a family dinner.

It was lovely to see Kelly, her husband Daniel, their daughter Lucy (aged 3 1/2); Tracey and Jasper; Lizzy and her son Xavier (aged 4, and otherwise known as Jig) and Lizzy’s partner Kiel. Lizzy had been on night shift so Jig had stayed at Kelly’s and they had been to a Christmas fair, where they had both had their faces painted. Jig was a Tiger and Lucy was a pirate.

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Telling a story to Lucy and Jig

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Storytelling time

My children were interested to meet Sue as they had read so much about her on the South American blog, plus Kelly (blog editor ) had got lots of photos from Sue’s emails and blogs. They had all heard so much about each other that they all felt like they had met already!

We started with a lovely cheese platter and Kelly, by request, had made homemade burgers plus as a surprise pork spareribs. Kelly had also gone to the trouble of getting a bottle of Hawkes Bay HaHa sparkling wine after reading about it on the blog.

I had lots of fun, it was great to catch up and get a chance to spend time with Jig, Lucy and Jasper.

Then it was time to go back to the motel, I was a bit sad to be leaving but am going to be back home in two weeks. Tomorrow we catch the ferry to Picton and stay in Picton, so it will be like another rest day.

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Day 3 – Wednesday 16 November

87km, 1,000 meters up, 750 meters down

It was to good to pack up my gear in a cabin, not having to be all stooped over in a tent. We had porridge this morning for breakfast which is always a favourite, but I have never had it with bananas and nuts mixed in before . . . not sure whether it’s something I will re-create.

The weather forecast is for rain again today but not till about 10am, so I set off with my wet weather gear in my Apidura (the bike pack on the back of my bike).

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Picture of an Apidura (bike back pack)

So turns out we did not have to ride back up the hill we came down to camp on, which I had hoped we wouldn’t – but I had somehow totally missed that the first 10km of the ride today was uphill straight from camp. Not great for already tired legs but it’s amazing what a nights rest can do, as I got up these hills without too much pain.

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Riding uphill straight out of camp – the road is steeper than it looks in the photo

Some nice views back to Tauranga and the hills and kiwi fruit orchards, but sadly as it was not new to me I did not think of getting any photos.

One of the female riders came past and commented she couldn’t go as slow as me up a hill as the gearing on her bike wouldn’t allow it. I responded “Maybe you need to get a new bike”. And I didn’t say but thought: maybe if her bike had gearing that allowed her to go slower up hills she wouldn’t have had to get the truck from lunch yesterday.

Then we went down into Te Puke and stopped at 18.4 km for a coffee stop at a place called ‘Very Tasty’. It was very tasty, I had a nice muffin and coffee.

We came across a field of cows who were very curious and rushed up to the fence to say hello. I could hear a low grumbling sound and I couldn’t work out what it was but then I could see a bull at the back who was clearly not happy that we were near his herd.

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Some locals on the way down to Te Puke

Then onto SH2 until the Whakatane exit, then along that road for 2km, then right into Wilson’s Road, away from the traffic again. At this stage, pretty much bang on 10am, it started to pour with rain. So I stopped to put my wet weather gear on.

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The Back road from Te Puke to Rotorua – a bit different than SH2! Note the orange flagging tape making sure we don’t make the wrong turn

At 31.2 k we turned onto the Old Coach Road, which was the original road to Rotorua. There was no traffic but it was quite hilly. Then it was hilly with gravel, and the regret about lack of training kicked in again.

I had adjusted my seat height before coming on the trip, but must not have tightened it enough as, without me noticing, it had come down a bit again. As a result my left knee was brushing against the bike frame while I was riding in the gravel which I didn’t notice until I got off when back on the Tarmac, then I saw I had scrapped the skin off. Luckily it was just a surface graze and covered so as not to get any dirt into it.

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Me riding up the gravel back road between Te Puke and Rotorua

Lunch was at 63 km, once again a really nice selection of sandwich food. Then thankfully only 24km left to ride to Rotorua. The 24km felt like 50km – first 5km was downhill then back onto SH2 with traffic and wind, and I found even the quite small hills were challenging.

With relief I arrived at the rest day motel. We stayed at the Wylie Court Motor Lodge. Very nice motel, every unit had its own private spa. Once again: can this be a TDA trip?

I had a shower and decided to leave the laundry until tomorrow, then went with Michelle, Tony and Brett to the town which was a 15 minute walk away, in search for food and beer. We went to a nice pub called the Pig and Whistle. We were just going to have a snack and go elsewhere but ended up staying there for snacks and beer then moved onto a Brookfield Syrah and dinner. The servings were really large but four hungry riders were up to the challenge. I had a Moroccan lamb sandwich with feta, olives and sun dried tomatoes, along with a bowl of curly fries (called pig tails).

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(Photo from the Pig and Whistle Facebook page)

Then we went to the supermarket on the way home to get breakfast supplies then home to bed. Lovely thought to not have to get up in the morning and ride anywhere. Also no need to head off to be a tourist in Rotorua either, so a lazy day coming up 😀😀😀

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Day 9/164: Via Lactea to Medellin – 48km

734 km down: 12,907 km to go

It was cold enough again to sleep in a sleeping bag. We camped at approximately 2,500 metres. Just as I was about asleep last night the security lights came on right over our tents, thankfully after about an hour they went off. Not sure if someone complained or whether they were on a timer.

Today we had 25 kilometres riding then were meeting as a group to ride in convoy into Medellín. There were 8 riders that did not ride today, which includes 4 who left the camp by taxi yesterday to get another night in Medellín.

When we left the camp, it was straight up a hill so I walked up to the top and rode from there. I only had to get off once more for the ride. I missed a flag at 12.6 kilometres, so rode an extra 4 kilometres which more than made up for it.

Luckily it was mostly rolling hills, nothing like yesterday. Of course the one other time I had to get off was in front of a bunch of locals.

Half of the first section of the ride was downhill, we dropped nearly 1,000 meters in 12 kilometres. It is Sunday today so I passed a few riders coming up it. I had to stop a couple of times to let the rims cool down. There were 3 local boys who came screaming past me at great speed. One of the other riders said he saw one come off but jump back on, and another nearly collect a bus. I came around one corner and they were sitting at the side of the road, looked like they were repairing a bike.

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All downhill to Medellin (Photo credit: Sue’s Facebook page)

Got to the bottom where we were meeting for the convoy. A local lady was selling the most wonderful hot chocolate. I shared my lunch with an adolescent dog with a limp, who looked hungrier than me. Actually he got all of it.

There were 3 riders from Medellín who came to lead the convoy in. It was especially chosen to arrive on a Sunday as on Sundays half of the city’ motorways and highways are shut during the day for cyclists. There are wardens every few kilometres and at intersections, plus policia dotted around.

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Convoy into Medellin (Photo credit: Sue’s Facebook page)

The convoy took about an hour. One of the riders on the way in commented we could go back up the hill the next day and do a time trial. My look of horror must have been the same as if he had suggested that I cut off my arm. I managed to stutter out that I needed to rest my legs!

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Riding into Medellin (Photo credit: Sue’s Facebook page)

The hotel rooms are quite large, with good air-conditioning, plus hot running water, a shower and a bath.

Today was spent sorting out gear, washing, emails and stocking up on supplies:
Large plastic bags
Sunscreen
Bug spray
Water
Snack food
Batteries

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Buying supplies (Photo credit: Sue’s Facebook page)

Shopping at the local store (Photo credit: Sue's blog)

Shopping at the local store (Photo credit: Sue’s blog)

A number of the riders have commented there doesn’t seem to be that many bugs. That’s because they are all lurking around me for the moment they find a spot of skin without bug spray!

After going to bed at about 7:30 for the past five nights I have been wide awake tonight, but now am off to bed.

Tomorrow I have to go to the bike shop to get some stuff such as another magnet that will hopefully make my speedo go, and clips for my new shoes as the old ones are unlikely to last another day.

Sue's chocolate stash for the next 6 days (finally - a photo Kaye took!)

Sue’s chocolate stash for the next 6 days (Editor’s note: finally – a photo Kaye took!)

Categories: Columbia, South American Epic | Tags: , , , , | 4 Comments