May 1, 2000 - Torremolinos Spain

Leaving Gibraltar (the rock in the background)

On the way out of town a local passerby seeing the number on the front of our bikes thought it was some kind of race and tried to indicate to us that we were a 1/2 hour behind! I just said we have half a year to catch up!

May 3, 2000 Granada Spain

Pedaled our butts off the get the 53 miles to Granada early to try and get tickets to the Alhambra. Got there about 11am. Sold out! (A rider warned the night before you needed to be there by 7am to get tickets unless you were part of a tour).

May 4, 2000 Cordoba (102 miles today).

Camping, but there is a pool (outdoors) we are having dinner by. They've been busy setting up for hours. Just after they started setting the bread on the tables it started to rain. We all had dinner holding umbrellas in one hand.

May 6, 2000 Sevilla

2 km before the campground it started to rain. We were so close we decided not to stop for our rain gear. I figured there would be a dry place at the campground. Wrong! It was a cloud burst. We were both soaked in seconds. When we got to the campground I found the only covered space was to go to the toilet, and it wasn't heated, so it took a while to dry. Parts of the campground are under puddles. Some riders were in earlier and pitched their tents in a low spot that is now flooded.

May 7, 2000 day off in Sevilla

Cathedral in Sevilla:

Trying to stay organized:
Camp in Sevilla

May 9, 2000 Monsaroz Portugal

Monika got about a 3 minute head start this morning while I pumped up my tires. Usually I bike faster than her in the morning, but today I couldn't catch her. There was a long downhill and she started drafting behind some fast riders when they came by, and peeked out at 40MPH on the downhill! Didn't catch up until the checkpoint where she waited for me. And I thought I was hauling!

May 10, 2000 Evora Portugal

Visited the church here that has inside walls made out of stacks of human bones!

May 11, 2000 Lisbon

As usual we arrive in the big city during rush hour after being tired from a long ride. This is seldom any fun. The route sent us down cobblestone streets with trams running down the road. I caught my tire in the tracks again and fell over, knocking Monika down also. We were both lying the middle of a busy street with the tram coming. Had to quickly untangle and drag ourselves out of the way of the oncoming tram.

May 12, 2000 Lisbon

Today's my birthday. Everyone flies to Washington DC today to do month riding from there to Montreal Canada before coming back to Paris. This doesn't make much sense to us the leave Europe, then come back. So we stay here instead, and rent a car for the month. Several other people are also staying in Europe. We take another day off here to rest, then drive Joan's rental car back to France to drop it off (save a huge drop off charge, vs. leaving it in Lisbon) and pick up a car of our own in Biaritz. Our route goes through Madrid and Pamplona.

We stayed the 4 weeks in Europe when the group went back
to the US and Canada on May 12. With a rented car we drove
around through Spain, Portugal, France, Andorra and Germany
before returning to Paris.

We retrace the section of the route we missed through Carcassone:
Carcasonne France

and Andorra and stop again in Barcelona for a few days. (We really like that city).

Then drive back to Madrid to get Monika's daughter who came for a 1 week visit. Go back to Barcelona, then back to Madrid so she can fly home. Then on to Germany to see Monika's mother again.


Castle in Segovia Spain
Segovia Spain
This castle houses an artillery museum where I learned that St. Barbara is the patron saint of artillery! (Something sounds very wrong about that).

In all we drove about 8000 Km before rejoining the group in Paris. In typical TKA fashion, everyone arrived after the long flight (which was also counted as a "bed"), checked into a cramped hotel, then left the next morning to ride 110 miles!

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