Friday, April 4, 2014

A Day in the Life

As we get closer to the bottom sections of the tour, I thought I would share with you the standard practises of a TDA rider. Depending on what time you wake up, breakfast is preceded by two urns of hot liquid: one for tea and the other for caffeine. Each person dismantles her or his tent, packs up their accoutrement and stuffs it in a locker on the camp truck. This is no small task, especially if you are not a morning person. 

Each cyclist sets a pace for herself or himself and carries on. I tend to ride alone and "hop on" if a crew of riders pass me. Lunch is usually abut halfway between the camp and where we aim to stay. On this Zambian morning, camp was about 75 kilometres and Steven, our Tanzania driver of the lunch truck, put out this spread. 

At lunch, one can decide to finish peddling for the day or make the full journey. Similarly, if one wants to cycle from the lunch truck, one can sit on the truck until lunch truck has been set up and then ride from 
there until camp. Each site has an audience of locals who are curious about the weird Europeans on bikes.

One gathers one's riding kit and hops on the two wheels and peddles until camp is reached. Upon arrival at camp, some rest, relax and have a bowl of Yanez's soup once it has been proffered in a massive metal bin. Others look for a cold beverage nearby. I am part of this latter group. The other priority is to do one's ablutions and  pitch the tent. If the sun is shining, it is prudent to dry one's clothing and/or wash the soiled bibs. The tent becomes one's refuge and storage facility overnight.

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