Today was a day to remember! Not for the scenic beauty, but for the catastrophic event of Trusty. Before launching into the details of our crazy afternoon, let us tell you about this morning.
Last night we had decided to implement a ‘get out of bed early go to bed early’ strategy. And so it was that this morning Anthony got out of bed at 7:30am. Showered, dressed and packed we both left for breakfast before 9:00am, where we met Pauline and Grenville originally from Derbyshire (England) who were visiting family in Jersey and then taking a vacation up the New England coast. Following breakfast we were back in our room making final decisions about what bike gear to wear to ensure we didn’t get too cold on the ride (the temperatures have been dropping recently). By 10:30am we were outside at the front of the hotel in the searing heat (yeah we were surprised too) taking layers of clothes off! We started to pull a small crowd. Chatting to a few people we explained that we were cyclists and not voyeurs with a fetish for black skin-tight clothing.
Waving goodbye to our new found friends we set off on our 55-mile ride toward Camden. The going was tough but not difficult. For the first 5 miles, the road surface was horrendous and the traffic was thick and fast. But we soldiered on and as luck would have, 1 mile later we turned off the main road and onto a quieter and smoother version. All was good as we crested the brow of our first hill climb for the day and began a gentle descent down the other side. Whilst freewheeling with carefree intent, Anthony decided to pick up the pace a little and put some torque through the crank. At that precise moment everything went crazy! Seriously, we had no idea what happened, but the resulting image of his back wheel, spokes, rear derailleur, chain and cables meant that cycling was off the menu for today (see photos).
Fortunately our mobile phone and the prompt service from a nearby taxi company, was instrumental in helping to save the day. Jerry our taxi driver picked us up in the middle of nowhere and drove us to the nearest bike-shop, Bath Cycle & Ski where Jesse fixed everything, Davis grilled some chicken on the BBQ and Marnie was really nice. We must have spent 4 hours in the shop whilst Trusty was put back together again and we give our full gratitude to Jesse, Davis and Marnie for getting us back on the road. By the time all was present and correct and after receiving a very kind donation from John Bouchard, it was 5pm. Rather than begin a 50 mile cycle with the last 3 hours/30 miles being completed in the dark, we called the cab company again and had to spend dollars to get ourselves to Camden. Thanks to Tony our other taxi driver who got us to our destination safely and still with daylight hours to spare.
Strangely, we were still tired and hungry for fresh good food when we got to our hotel. Our prayers were answered, as just 2 blocks from our hotel was a great (utterly great) and honest restaurant, The Long Grain. Run by a couple from Bangkok, the meals were very tasty, made with organic ingredients sourced from local farms. We met more lovely people and especially enjoyed our time spent with Paul and Julie, who were vacationing, having their own kayaking adventure …good luck guys, it was great meeting you.
Back in the hotel room watching House, we hope tomorrow will be less adventurous.