Tuesday 16 March 2010

It’s a Bug’s Life

Have you ever wondered what a bug feels like as it hits the windscreen of your car? We’ll save you the jokes about what the last thing is that goes through its head… But, even if you have contemplated this fascinating question, have you ever considered what your windscreen feels like? Well, we think we can give some insight into this.

Spring has definitely arrived in Arizona. Technically, according to The Weather Channel, Spring starts on Saturday, but we’re already in the 80s here, the wildflowers blooming, and with them…yes, the BUGS are out in force. We first realised this yesterday evening as we changed Trusty’s tyre, and found them swarming around in packs and swooping down mercilessly onto every piece of exposed skin. Somehow, we didn’t end up with as many bites as we thought, but that was more through luck than better judgment.

Today, the bugs were in full flight as we cycled along. Imagine that our teeth are the radiator grill; our glasses the headlamps; and our handlebar bags the bonnet. A couple of rules all cyclists know: always zip up your shirt when descending, and most importantly of all, whenever you are travelling at speed, keep your mouth closed (a bug between the teeth is even less attractive then a piece of spinach, and one stuck in the back of the throat is even worse). Even when following these rules, there’s still a fair chance of some unwanted stow-aways either stuck in your cycle helmet or perched on your handlebar bar clinging on for dear life. Bugs, bugs, bugs…you gotta love em.

So, bug’s aside, what happened today? Well, it was a hot and sunny 55-mile ride from Wickenburg, the “gold rush” town, to Salome, a small town with little fame of which we are aware. The wind and hills were kind to us, and all we really had to worry about were the punctures and slow punctures that continue to plague us. Finding ourselves with a diminishing stock of spares (actually, no spare tyre and one spare tube, which was in need of a patch to repair it) was actually quite an alarming state of affairs. Still, we’re hoping to limp in to Blythe, CA tomorrow, where there is a small bike shop that can hopefully help us out.

One noteworthy event was lunch. We stopped at a small town called Aguila, pretty much the only place between Wickenburg and Salome, and were thrilled to find a farmer’s market in full swing as we pulled in. We ate Gorditas from a van operated by a friendly Mexican couple, washed down with a couple of Refrescos, and let us tell you that this was by far the best Mexican food we have tasted so far on the whole trip…and recently, that has been A LOT! of Mexican food.

Tonight we are in a very basic motel, and just ate take out hamburger and fries from the local (Mexican) restaurant. Given that the only cash we had left between us was $12 (we had forgotten to go to the ATM), and they only took cash, this was all we could afford! Still, at least we came in under budget.

Us x

p.s. sorry for the late post and thank you to Cactus and Cream for letting us use their internet connection

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