zebra in ngrogoro
zebra in ngrogoro
  • Some photos in Tucson
    • 08/01/2012
shuffleboardingbeholdappropriate graffitiTucson Presidiokarlos
  • so this is the new year...
    • 04/01/2012
So fun times in Tucson, shooting safari animals with a shotgun (in a video game in the bar), playing shuffleboard, and eating gigantic burgers

my fave new year related song:
Death Cab for Cutie - New Year (video on Youtube)

Some other fun links:
Spiral Island (Wikipedia)
Someone told me about this great man made floating island off the coast of Mexico - oh yes i forgot to mention - i'm going to Mexico on Thursday.

Thumbs Up! - this web only TV show follows two Korean hitchhikers as they travel across the USA without paying for anything. Lovely.
  • Arizona!
    • 31/12/2011
FYI i'm in Tucson, Arizona, staying with my old summer camp buddy Karl.

There are lots of cactuses!
  • Cycling stories
    • 31/12/2011
So on my way down the west coast i've met lots of cyclist on inspiring long distance journeys.

First up was Paul, who was at the end of a huge trip covering Europe and Canada on a four wheeled bike-car.

Then in Santa Cruz i shared some free eggs with Lukas, a Swiss guy who had crossed the USA from New York.
Over the next couple of weeks i met him a further four times as our journeys kept overlapping down the coast, each time we would discuss the condition of our stomachs after finding out the eggs were several weeks out of date...
Lukas has some great stories already, including:
The dogs...
"all cyclists talk about in Kentucky is the dogs. they just start suddenly right after the border. first one, then a bit further two, and then all of a sudden dogs everywhere. some are little and just make some noise yip yip you know, but some are big and scary you know.
So you have to get past them, some people pick up stones and throw them at the dogs, some people have airhorns. Sometimes you see a dog sleeping and you try to sneak past really quietly and then peddle as fast as you can"

The raccoons...
Camping out in northern California, the raccoons have no fear - open his paniers (they can open zippers) and eat his garlic mash potato and make a big mess... but they didn't even eat it so much.. all he has left as alternative is red wine and crackers
Also chewed some girls passport and she find it a few yards away...

The cat man...
A lot of cyclists follow the same route and stay at the same places, such as "The Cat Guy"
(The reccomended guides are http://www.adventurecycling.org/routes/)
"You give him twenty dollars and he gives you a baked potato with cream cheese...
..and he likes to drink brandy with you"
He has like 15 cats, and all these alarms so he knows when the cats come in, and they all line up to eat
Then you look at the end of this row of cats and there are two raccoons eating alongside - they just come in and eat all peacefully, and then go back out to the woods!

The spokes...
It seems that a touring bike is like a chain, one weak link and you'll be stuck on the top of a mountain pass in the rain making makeshift repairs.
Lukas is pretty pissed off because he keeps breaking spokes - he complained to the manufacturer and they sent him a whole new set, and he got a bike shop in San Fran to rebuild the wheel...
...but less than 50 miles down the road SNAP.

He made it down to San Diego for Xmas, which turned out to be a rallying point for a whole load of cyclists en route down to central america.

San Diego hostel hosts a 500 mile 6 day xmas bike ride every year, for which Becky had come down from Seattle (not by bike though!)

Also at the hostel was Peter, a 69 year old Canadaian guy who is part way through an epic 18 month journey from the Yukon down to Argentina
www.yogipeter.com

So cue much discussion of bike parts, routes, and wildlife. Which was all actually very interesting!

Then there's all the people i've seen cycling locally carrying shopping, surfboards, and other bicycles!
And the huge range of bike styles, lots of recumbant bikes, and some multi-story bikes where people have welded two or three bikes together vertically.
For myself, i rented a bike once in Santa Barbara and it was hard work. hills, wind, broken gear shift, and the bike seemed to be made out of solid lead or something. In contrast, these touring bikes weigh so little you can pick them up with one finger.
Well, excluding the 60+lb of luggage, including lots of water, spare bike parts, stove and tent.
Still its a cheap way to see the world, (i've heard $10 a day quoted if camping and buying groceries), and you see eeeeeverything. So it's on the to-do list for the future!


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