Monday, February 21, 2011

TdA Stage 30. Routines. Rocks.

105km. Breathtaking Ridge Camp to Addis Ababa.

Cycling through Africa isn't exactly routine, but routines are an important part of making this journey happen.

My daily routine consists of  waking up, usually to the sound of Francis-the-postman taking down his tent. As far as I can tell, he wakes up at 4am, even though sunrise doesn't start until 6am and there is nothing to eat until 630am.

I wake up at about 530am. Somewhere between 536am and 537am, my body reminds me of the sheer quantity of fuel that it has processed through the night. Serious clockwork. Get dressed. Take down the tent. Then it is coffee and breakfast around 630am.

Dennis is invariably the last one to take his tent down. This was initially surprising to me, given that his tent is, by far, the largest of anyone in the group (think mini-theme-park), which one would expect would encourage him to start early. I recently learned that he packs up late because he doesn't have room in his locker and he sneaks his tent into a secret hiding spot on the truck. I can't wait until someone finds out and plays a trick on him...

By 7:05am we are rolling. And this is where the routine breaks down because every day is different. Different temperatures. Different roads. Different hill profiles. Different riding companions (lately I haven't had any on account of the hills).

Today we had a convoy during the second half of the day. Carrie and I arrived at the convoy meeting point early and had a lot of time to kill. She taught me a new game, which we called Bird. It involved throwing a large rock in the air and then trying to hit  it with other small rocks. After some time we realized that we were not getting any closer to hitting our moving target. So, we changed the game to a stationary target and renamed the game Rock. All that I can say is that a career in front of a computer has not prepared me well for any task that requires throwing skills.


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