Saturday, 11 September 2010

Patience is...

If patience is a virtue, as they say, today we were calling on all of our reserves. After Anthony’s tyre blow out yesterday, we were straight on the phone at 8am this morning, trying to track down some suitable tyres that we could get to, or that could get to us, sometime today so that we could make it to our next location, 35 miles, plus a ferry ride, away in Middlebury, Vermont.

We managed to get through to the guys that we met yesterday at High Peaks in Lake Placid, who said that they could help. Alex’s girlfriend Phoebe was driving over from Vermont to see him, and could drop by our hotel in Westport on her way armed with the tyres that we needed sourced from a bike shop in Burlington, VT. Initially, we were expecting Phoebe to arrive around 12-1pm… then it was 4pm, and then eventually she arrived at 5.50pm! We’re not complaining. Alex and Phoebe did us a massive favour. It’s just that we found that we are not very good at kicking our heels with an uncertain departure time, and with every minute that passed after 4pm, fixating on the fact that another minute of daylight was being knocked off the time available for us to get to Middlebury.

So, as soon as the tyres arrived, it was action stations. Anthony & Alexandra, the owners of The Inn on the Library Lawn in Westport, who had very kindly let us stay in our room all day while we waited for the tyres, had offered to give us a lift to the ferry to help save us some time. Trusty & Steed were already safely in the back of their truck, wheels off ready for the new tyres, and somehow Anthony (that’s our Anthony) managed to get all 4 tyres on the wheels during the 17-mile journey to the ferry. Thanks guys, for everything, and we enjoyed chatting with you…

Pumping up the tyres like crazy people and rushing down the gangway to the ferry across Lake Champlain, the sun was already setting by the time we touched down on the Vermont side of the Lake and started the 16-mile dash to our B&B. With flash backs of Bisbee, AZ in our minds, we soon found ourselves riding along in the pitch black on a road without a shoulder, and with a very poor road surface. Going downhill, we found it best to assume a mountain biking stance, close our eyes and just let ourselves go… don’t ask. Well, somehow we made it to the cute town of Middlebury in one piece. We were warmly greeted by Krista at The Inn on the Green, and shown to a gorgeous and very comfortable room, with water, Gatorade, ice, cheese and fruit to help us recover.

Decamping very swiftly in the direction of a nearby hostelry to get our dinner order in before the kitchens closed, we found 51 Main at the Bridge, a great little nightspot with live jazz, delicious tapas, and of course some chilled wine. Bliss. Our server, Elianna, was wonderful and the stresses of the last few hours soon melted away.

They also say that “patience and fortitude conquer all things”. We found that a few kind people and a couple of glasses of wine go a long way too…

Us x

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