Life On Two Wheels

Along the river and toward the mountains a morning shadow shimmers across the road. The rays of the first light jet through the trees and across a figure gliding upon the road. His breath trails in short spurts, petrified as it hits the icy air. All is quiet except the slight sound of the athlete as he summons himself for yet another days work. Soon the rest of the world will bustle with life as well and the brief simplicity of cyclist and nature will disappear into the everyday struggle of life in full motion; the errands and intervals, the appointments and intersections, and the deadlines and finish lines OutPaceTheRace

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Chicago to Gerona

In transition
Chicago to Gerona
January 24th

The plane ride from Chicago wasn’t so exciting. It took around 9 hours, totally ridiculous- especially when you’re surrounded by Crouts. I tried to sleep, but it was pretty much impossible for me. I got maybe 4 hours of sleep, but my eyes were always half open.
Frankfurt is quite different; everyone is German, my specialty. I can actually understand some of the stuff they say. I guess they don’t speak so quick here, everyone always says that natives speak their languages too quick for foreigners to understand, but in Germany that must not apply. One big difference here’s that they smoke in-doors, which sucks, not something I like so much. They’ve got ventilators that they want you to smoke by, but they don’t seem to work, everything smells like smoke, quite unpleasant.
So there’s nothing special about Girona from the plane, it all starts when you get into the city. It is simply, well maybe not so simple, but altogether different than the US. Number one- no one speaks English, its not like Taiwan where 40 percent understand a little, here they understand zero. Danny, a team mate of mine, said that Italy and Spain are kind of off in their own little world, they keep it Spanish and Italian… Our apartment is in a very old section of town, they are five stories tall with narrow cobble roads connecting them. At first you think that the cobbles are only for people to walk on but little cars come driving by, through, around- wherever. There’s also a canal type thing that runs in front of our apartment. We walk to the stores, that’s how close we are to town. The climate is tropical (very humid), but it gets cold at night in the morning, strange.
I haven’t rode yet, but am looking forward to it very much. The roads look great. Oh, and my preconceived notion that the cars drive on the wrong side of the road in Europe has been debunked, they only do that in Great Britain.