Thursday, April 21, 2011

TdA Stage 76. Snakes. Talent.

157km. Maun to Bush Camp.
With bush camp coming up and 825km to ride in the next five days, Scott, Luke, Terry and I hung back for one last big breakfast in town. I'm not saying that I don't like porridge, I just enjoy the opportunity to take my time eating it out of something other than a plastic bowl and with cutlery that does not fold. Not to mention how much nicer coffee tastes when it is not coming out of your plastic soup mug.
Rolling past at 40km/h as we left the city, we spotted a large snake at the side of the road. Curious to see it close up, we turned around and rode back. It was a four foot Black Mamba! My immediate thought was of all of times that I have walked through the tall grass to go to the bathroom. Let's just say that I didn't drink much water after that.
My hydration situation worsened in the afternoon when a handful of us were chatting under a tree near camp and spotted long green tree snake in the grass beside us. It was slithering toward the tree and proceeded to make its way up and in to the branches, where it then searched around from branch to branch (presumably) in search for an egg filled birds nest. Finding nothing, it slithered back down to the grass and then over to the next tree.
I was surprised that it came so close to us when we were making so much noise. The thought of getting up in the middle of the night and walking through the grass to relieve myself kept me from drinking more fluids, despite my rather pressing thirst.
At bush camp, we had another team challenge. A talent show! Realising that our limited talents of nostril flaring and tongue rolling were unlikely to impress the crowd, Carrie and I were forced to get creative. We used our energy bars as play dough and fashioned them in to a piece of art that resembled a cheese burger with fries and salad, and neopolitan ice cream (see my facebook album for stage 76 to see the finished project).
On this trip, there are a lot of occasions when there is not enough of something we want, or maybe too much of something that we don't like. To get through the trip with any sort of grace requires a talent for making the most of what you have. Our little art project was a tribute to this.
The motown boys (Steve, Scott, Young-Adam) demonstrated their talent for shot gunning beers. And the 60-something year old Peter the Plumber did a solo singing act. Not exactly your typical talent show. Then again, there isn't much on this trip that has been particularly typical.


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