Monday, August 26, 2013

Day 15 - Dubrovnik to Tucepi (150km)

We invited Axel over for brunch. Despite the fact that I find his "anti-capitalist" sentiments and willingness to eat food from a dumpster rather unpalatable, I was somewhat curious to observe the guy. Plus, Carrie was quite fond of him, so I took the opportunity as one of those experiences that come along with riding with Carrie.

Axel entertained us with stories of "white monkey" jobs that he had taken while he was in China. This included playing the "fake keyboard" (the keyboard equivalent of lip syncing) in a variety show.


Today was meant to be a rest day, but I decided to continue riding on my own after we finished brunch. Although Carrie and I have gotten along remarkably well, considering that we have spending 24 hours a day together for more than two weeks now, there has been an unspoken realization that we are both looking for something different for the journey.

At the start of this journey, it was unthinkable to me that Carrie and I wouldn't make it to Paris together. I still have a hard time believing that we won't. But it is fairly clear to me that we stand a good chance of damaging our relationship if we continue together without some sort of break.

I rode for 7.5 hours into a headwind, trying to make some sense of things and stopping only for coke and chocolate milk. Sorting through a strange combination of relief and guilt, doubt and confidence about my decision to separate, I started to understand what happened.

Though the actual 'plan' came together rather haphazardly, this trip has really been two years in the making. When we last rode together in South Africa, it was clear that we would ride together again, somewhere. It is something which we both looked forward to and which we jumped on as soon as the opportunity to do so became apparent.

When we rode in Africa, our highest priorities were crystal clear (ex. EFI) and we even made a point to discuss them as we made our way down the continent. That was not the case this time. This time, we presumed that the others company was all that we needed.

It wasn't.

We could each see that the other was not totally satisfied and we started making decisions based on what we thought that the other wanted (without necessarily knowing what that was). Of course, this was a vicious (albeit well intended) circle that led to increasing dissatisfaction on both sides; borne from a love for each other and a desire to make the other happy.

Then again, maybe its just healthy for two people to take a break from time to time. I hope that's all it is and that we can meet up again down the road.


The road between Dubrovnik and Tucepi follows a magnificent coastline that is probably better enjoyed from the seat of a convertible than on a bicycle, on account of the fact that there is no shoulder and there are many very large trucks and tourist buses screaming past just inches from me. I don't know how fully loaded cycle tourists with paniers survive this road.


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