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:
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
We retrace the section of the route we missed through Carcassone:
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
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!