As per my earlier blog, I slept badly and restlessly..ultimately jumping out of bed for a 6.30 am start. I showered, had a quick coffee and bite of food, last minute packing and then……I looked out the window and it was pitch black!! I had not thought about that…and my front light cannot be mounted whilst the front pannier in place..
What to do? Another cup of coffee of course…updating Facebook correspondence and messages…then out the front door, lock the house and then, where are my gloves??
Groan? No idea and I’m locked out of the house and bags all packed…..thinking, thinking, thinking….oh, there is a ground floor window open for Indie, the cat…so here I am breaking back into the house, over the kitchen sink. Gloves nowhere obvious but oh look….. John has a pair…I am sure he won’t mind me borrowing them??? Well I hope not!?!
Little traffic made early progress easy. A lady cyclist (Liz) approached from behind and we chatted and she offered me to follow her. I stopped after hearing weird noises from my bike…turns out my rear pannier had dropped and was rubbing on the tyre so some adjustments on the strapping fixed it.
Liz had stopped at a house and beckoned me, and then there were a few more, Renee, Dianne and Paul. It was lovely to ride with them for a bit, before we needed to part ways. Dianne kindly gave me a rear tail light to use, as mine had died due to operator error!
So I rode up and down hills all day as you can see from my graph and my route is below the graph.
It is not often one gets to see both the west and east coast of a country, in the one day. With the adjusted route today I got to do that.
The sculpture above was one of a few for a local business. I loved this one too.
The local business where Rhuby had a rest…
At the 50km point the winds started to pick up. I have been watching weather reports more than usual once I became aware of Cyclone Hola in Vanuatu and its trajectory towards North Island.
A couple of nasty sidewind gusts got the old adrenaline going down one descent.
This was the view from a great loo stop.
Not far from here was a lookout with views ( funny that, who would have thought a lookout would have views!?!). In the last photo you can just see the west coast.
From the lookout it was only about 10 km to Wellsford, where I was very glad to arrive. A fairly non descript town but I enjoyed a great lunch at the Blue Cat cafe… spinach, bacon and cheese salad, an iced coffee and a yummy raspberry icecream.
Whilst I ate my lunch, a young couple came in and wanted to talk to me about my bike, and what I was doing. It is meeting people like this that actually provides me the encouragement to keep going. It is so refreshing.
Eventually I turned off the highway heading for Mangawhai, and then Mangawhai Heads. I purchased some food for dinner and snacks at the local store, lent my bike pump to a couple of kids to get them moving, and peddled off to my accomodation.
Tonight I have a bedroom in the house of a lovely lady who has been outstanding in her hospitality offering snacks, wine, cake…maybe I should stay as the weather forecast is not promising. Winds of over 120k kmh.
On that note, Uncle Don rang… he’d watched the weather …and he rang in to see how I had fared today, what about tomorrow and oh, guess what? He has my riding gloves!!
I wanted to show two other photos. The first is my face post 116 km with wind exfoliation….and the second my washing..yeah yeah, not exciting but i love this rail idea in a laundry!
So I’ll sign off now as I listen to the wind howling outside.