How I tried and failed


Advertisement
Australia's flag
Oceania » Australia » Queensland » Brisbane
November 17th 2008
Published: November 17th 2008
Edit Blog Post

I feel shame and sadness in equal parts when I admit that this will be the 1st and only cycling blog of our trip...

I was so looking forward to cycle the world!!... reading other cyclists' blogs I made a romantic and naive idea of live on the road... but experience has taught me that I am not as strong... maybe it was the heat, maybe the spiders, maybe the noises at night, but after 200 kms I had to retire from the race...

It all started 5 days ago when, full of energy and as exited as a couple of teenagers on their first date, we set off from our Couchsurfing hosts, D. and J., and we started pedaling heading south. It was so hot that, at 1pm, I was exhausted and we had to pitch the tent and rest the whole afternoon... that was the 1st free camping night and my 1st sleepless night...

Next morning, I had my 1st, of many, anxiety attacks, thinking about the agony from the day before. But, live brings you surprises and the 2nd day was much better than the 1st one, as it wasn't so windy and it didn't rain... but it didn't matter how much sun screen we rubbed on, we ended up with sun burnt arms (and I didn't want to get a "cyclist tan"), but much happier than the previous day. But, we spent the night in a park and, even Dax was very relaxed because he has done it before (well, and because he's very relaxed anyway!!) I spent, once again, a sleepless night...

So, on the 3rd day, I woke up tired and with no will power, even though I felt less anxious because I enjoyed the ride the day before... but I wasn't going to enjoy that one... we had to stop a few hours at midday because of the heat was too much and we stopped to see a children motocross competition: from little boys who were more interested in getting muddy that the race itslef and who could barely hold the motorbikes, to the new cool generation all dress the same way, I repeat all: caps that were too big for their heads, hanging trousers and socks stretched to the limit, like a German tourist in Mallorca and white glasses... showing "lot of personality"... but we had a good time and, after 3 hours, we decided it was time to get back on the bikes... it wasn't 2 hours later when I collapsed on the grass, eating nuts to get some energy to get up again... my Charming prince convinced a farmer to let us pitch the tent in his property... where I had the 3rd night from hell: we went to sleep at about 7.30 pm, to get up at 5 am and pedal for a few hours before the day got too hot again; I woke up the 1st time at 11 pm because someone was playing really loud music, then because I imagined steps outside the tent, then because I heard an animal making strange noises on the other side of the river (and this is true, even Dax got up to check it out, so strange it sounded!!), and even because I smelled burning!!! (and that wasn't true!!)... when I woke up at 4 am, I changed the alarm at 6 am instead of 5, to get some rest...

But the cows had different plans and they came to inspect our tent at 5.15 am, so we had to get up... i moved one of the bags and a GIGANTIC spider came out and I started screaming and crying a bit hysterically because THAT WAS TOO MUCH!!, under "normal" circumstances I wouldn't mind that much to share the tent with a spider, but I had barely any sleep for the previous 3 nights and I was tired and irritated and I wanted to go home to have a bad and read on the sofa...

But, of course I didn't go home, but I climbed on the bike and started pedaling again, under a scorching sun (at 7.30 am!!) and with no water, as there wasn't any where we camped; after 6 kms, we found a woman who gave us water and told us we were on the wrong direction, she showed us the right road and told us it was a "bit steep" and we may have to push... when we got to the road I wanted to die!!, it was so steep that I couldn't even push my bike and Dax (bless him!!) had to push his with one hand and help me with the other... after 3 kms up hill, he even had to take one of my bags and carry it on his shoulders (have I got the best husband or what??)...

I had been crying for 3 hours and, finally, we had a talk about whether or not to keep going... well, actually, I threw myself on the floor saying that I didn't want to ride any more... and that was the moment when (I) decided the end of our cycling adventure...

At least we left the mountain behind and, after 4 kms in an endless plain, without a single tree and with a sun so strong that we kept pouring water over our heads and necks but it was evaporated before it touched us, we got to Murwillumbah where we wanted to get a train back to our home with D. and J. but, to our surprise, the only way out was by bus and they didn't take bikes on them... fortunately, we found the kindest bus driver in the country who, not only allowed us to put the bikes in the bus, but because we didn't have enough money, charged us as "elderly" and was explaining all the sights along the way... basically sugar cane!!

And so we got to Tweed Heads where, after 4
thanks for the blanket, mum!!  /  gracias por la manta, mama!!thanks for the blanket, mum!!  /  gracias por la manta, mama!!thanks for the blanket, mum!! / gracias por la manta, mama!!

check out my super tanned arms but white face and legs!!... cyclist fashion / ojo con mis brazos super bronceados pero piernas y cara blancas!!... a la moda ciclista
days riding, we had a well deserved shower and slept on a bed...

I know some of you are thinking "I knew it"... well, I didn't know it, and I really thought I was going to last more than 4 days but, as I said, life brings you surprises and I learnt that I am not as strong as I thought... the worse bit was to see Dax's face, as he was enjoying all that "freedom"...

I reached a point when I was so anxious and stressed that I didn't want to travel any more and only wanted to go back home but, fortunately, I calmed down and we decided to travel in a different way, by bus ot train like "normal people" and try to enjoy it as much as we can... but both of us are very disappointed, specially Dax and, for a while I thought he will ask for the ring back but, instead, he understood that it was too hard for me, that, at least, I tried and that we didn't come here to suffer, but to have a good time...


The best: have tried something new
The worse: have failed on
I was still happy!!  /  seguia siendo feliz!!I was still happy!!  /  seguia siendo feliz!!I was still happy!! / seguia siendo feliz!!

that was the 2nd day / era el segundo dia
it





Como lo intente y falle



Siento pena y verguenza a partes iguales al admitir que este sera el primero y unico blog ciclista de nuestro viaje...

Que ganas tenia de recorrer el mundo en bici!!... leyendo los blogs de otros ciclistas me habia hecho una idea, un poco romantica e inocente, de la vida en la carretera... pero la experiencia me ha demostrado que yo no soy tan fuerte... quiza fuera el calor, quiza las aranhas, quiza los ruidos nocturnos, pero despues de 200 kms, me tuve que retirar de la carrera...

Todo empezo hace poco mas de 5 dias, cuando, llenos de energia y nerviosos como quiceanheros en su primera cita, dejamos la casa de nuestros Couchsurfing anfitriones, D. y J., y nos pusimos a dar pedales rumbo al sur. Hacia tanto calor que a la 1 pm yo ya no podia mas y tuvimos que montar la tienda y descansar toda la tarde... esa fue la primera noche de acampada libre y mi primera noche de no dormir y de oir ruditos extranhos que sonaban a pisadas asesinas...

Al dia siguiente, me dio el primer ataque de ansiedad de lo que seria una larga coleccion de ellos pensando en la agonia que habia sido el dia anterior. Pero, la vida te da sorpresas, sorpresas te da la vida y el segundo dia fue mucho mejor que el primero ya que, ni hacia tanto viento ni llovia... pero por mucha proteccion solar que nos pusimos, acabamos con los brazos quemados (y yo queria evitar a toda costa el tener un "bronceado de ciclista"), pero mucho mas felices que el dia anterior. Sin embargo, pasamos la noche en un parque y, aunque Dax estaba tranquilisimo porque el ya habia dormido en parques antes (bueno, y porque el es tranquilisimo de todas formas!!) yo pase, otra vez, una noche malisima casi sin dormir...

Asi que, el tercer dia, me levante cansada y sin ganas de hacer nada, aunque ya no tenia tanta ansiedad por lo que me esperaba en la carretera ya que el dia anterior habia sido bueno... pero ese no lo iba a ser... tuvimos que parar unas horas al mediodia porque el calor era INSOPORTABLE, y paramos a ver una competicion de chavales haciendo motocross: desde chiquillos de 5 anhos que estaban mas interesados en jugar con
banana for the brain  /  platano para el cerebrobanana for the brain  /  platano para el cerebrobanana for the brain / platano para el cerebro

they are not space warriors, they are motorbike riders!! / no son guerreros espaciales, son moteros!!
el barro que en las carreras y que apenas podian con las motos, a la nueva generacion de guays, todos vestidos iguales, repito, todos: gorras tipo beisbol demasiado grandes para sus cabezas, pantalones caidos, calcetines estirados a mas no poder tipo turista aleman en Mallorca y gafas de pasta blanca... demostrando "mucha personalidad"... pero nos lo pasamos bastante bien y, despues de 3 horas alli, decidimos seguir nuestro camino... no pasaron ni 2 horas antes de que yo me tirara en la hierba, completamente agotada, comiendo nueces a punhados para poder recuperar un poco de energia y levantarme otra vez... mi principe azul consiguio que un granjero nos dejara montar la tienda en su terreno... y alli pase la tercena noche infernal: nos acostamos sobre las 7.30 pm, para poder levantarnos a las 5 am y hacer unos kms antes de que hiciera demasiado calor; me desperte la 1a vez a las 11 pm porque alguien puso musica altisima y sonaba como un concierto al aire libre, luego porque me imagine pisadas al lado de la tienda, porque habia un animal aullando y grunhendo al otro lado del rio (y esto es cierto porque Dax se levanto para ver lo que era!!) e incluso porque me imagine que olia a quemado!! (lo cual no era verdad!!)... Cuando me desperte a las 4 am, decidi cambiar el despertador para las 6 am en vez de las 5, para descansar un poco...

Pero las vacas tenian otras ideas y se pusieron a olfatear nuestra tienda a las 5.15 am, con lo cual, nos tuvimos que levantar... al mover una de las bolsas, salio una aranha GIGANTE de ella y me puse a chillar y llorar como una histerica porque era lo que me faltaba!!!, en circunstancias "normales" no me hubiera importado compartir la tienda con una aranha, pero casi no habia dormida en las 3 ultimas noches y estaba cansada e irritada y me queria ir a mi casa a darme un banho y leer en el sofa...

Por supuesto, no me fui a casa, sino que me monte en la bici y pedaleamos otra vez, bajo un sol ardiente (a las 7.30 am!!) y sin agua, porque en donde acampamos no habia donde llenar las botellas!!; despues de 6 kms, encontramos a una senhora que nos dio agua y nos dijo que ibamos en la direccion equivocada, nos ensenho la carretera que teniamos que cojer y nos aviso de que era un "poco empinada"... cuando llegamos a la carretera yo me queria morir!!, era tan empinada que no podia ni empujar la bici y el pobre de Dax tenia que empujar la suya con una mano y ayudarme a mi con la otra mano... despues de mas de 3 kms cuesta arriba, incluso tuvo que cojer una de mis bolsas y llevarla en su bici para que yo me pudiera mover (tengo el mejor marido del mundo o que??)...

Yo llevaba 3 horas llorando y, por fin, hablamos de seguir o no seguir... bueno, mas bien, yo me tire al suelo y chille perjurando que no iba a andar un solo dia mas en bici... y ese fue el momento en que (yo) decidi el final de nuestra aventura ciclista...

Por fin dejamos atras la montanha y, despues de 4 kms en una llanura enorme, sin un solo arbol y con tanto sol que nos teniamos que echar agua por la cabeza y cuello y se evaporaba antes de tocarnos, llegamos a Murwillumbah donde ibamos q coger un tren de vuelta a nuestro hogar con D. y J., pero, para nuestra sorpresa, el unico modo de salir de esa ciudad era en bus y no podiamos llevar las bicis en ellos... pero, por fortuna, encontramos al conductor de buses mas amable del pais, que no solo nos dejo meter las bicis en el bus, sino que, como no nos llegaba el dinero para pagar el billete, nos cobro como si fueramos pensionista y nos fue explicando lo que ibamos viendo por el camino... basicamente canha de azucar!!...

Asi llegamos a Tweed Heads, donde, despues de 4 dias pedaleando, nos dimos una merecida ducha y dormimos en una cama...

Se que algunos de vosotros estareis pensando "yo ya lo sabia"... pues yo no lo sabia y, de verdad, pensaba que iba a ser capaz de durar mas de 4 dias... pero la vida te da sorpresas y yo he aprendido que no soy tan fuerte como pensaba... lo peor de todo era ver la cara de tristeza de Dax, ya que el se lo estaba pasando muy bien con toda esa "libertad"...

Llego un momento en el que, estaba tan nerviosa y agobiada que no queria viajar mas y queria volver a casa pero, por fortuna, me calme un poco y decidimos, simplemente, enfocar el viaje de otra manera y viajar en tren y bus como la gente "normal" e intentar pasarnoslo tan bien como podamos de todas maneras... pero los dos estamos muy decepcionados, sobre todo Dax y, durante un rato, me temia que me iba a pedir que le devolviera el anillo... pero, en lugar de eso, entendio perfectamente que me estaba costando demasiado, que por lo menos lo intente y que no hemos venido hasta aqui para sufrir sino a pasarnoslo bien...

Lo mejor: haber intentado algo nuevo
Lo peor: haber fallado...





Additional photos below
Photos: 14, Displayed: 14


Advertisement

happy Dax  /  Dax felizhappy Dax  /  Dax feliz
happy Dax / Dax feliz

even though he was carrying my 3rd bag on his shoulders!! / incluso llevando mi tercera bolsa sobre sus hombros!!


17th November 2008

Saludos
Hola Deni y Dax, Deni, I really felt for you after reading your last blog as I could imagine how hard it must have been for you and because of the decision you two made in the end. But remember, at least you've tried it so don't be sad and enjoy the rest of the trip! I spoke to Aimar last week and he said he wanted to go and see you guys in Malasya...lucky you... No news here, we're all fine and enjoying the horrible, wet weather (he,he). Going to SS for Christmas where hopefully, Rosa and Ramon might join me for a few days there and maybe Ivan and Roci as well! Bueno chicos, mucho animo y un abrazo muy pero que muy fuerte. Maria
17th November 2008

You can keep trying
Hi Dax and Deni, We are enjoying your trip as if it was ours. I didn't realize when we were travelling how nice is it to wake up every morning and check your travel blog to see how are you both getting on. Deni, you haven't failed, you have just had your first contact with and amazing way of travelling which can be brutally hard, just having tried it is incredible and I'm sure you'll try it again later on...all the best. VAGAMUNDOS.
17th November 2008

Bravo ....
At least you tried the cycle method, in 2 years I never even got on one bike....so a big pat on the back to you guys, loved the blog and the pics, a fine hubby you have there..... (I also love the advertising on your Tblog for big stretched Limo Limo services...a sign maybe of things to come? That is google at its best!) X
17th November 2008

de pena
ya me gusta su blog entry pero en mi opinion se necesita entre cinco y diez dias de cyclar antes de tener el ezfuerzo necesario de cyclar cada dia 100 kilometros. I`ve a blog myself on this site uploading a cycle trip in California. under my user name heraclio. did like your story though. Hans
17th November 2008

"El éxito es la habilidad de ir de fracaso en fracaso sin perder entusiasmo." Winston Churchill "Un fracasado es un hombre que ha cometido un error, pero que no es capaz de convertirlo en experiencia." Elbert Hubbard "Tienes el mejor marido del mundo" Aimar Rodriguez
17th November 2008

"El éxito es la habilidad de ir de fracaso en fracaso sin perder entusiasmo." Winston Churchill "Un fracasado es un hombre que ha cometido un error, pero que no es capaz de convertirlo en experiencia." Elbert Hubbard "Tienes el mejor marido del mundo" Aimar Rodriguez
17th November 2008

Va a ser genial de todas formas!!
No te preocupes hermanita!! Os lo vais pasar en grande de todas formas!! Solo es un "pequeñisimo" cambio en los planes... y esa foto con los camiones..... mama y yo nos cagamos!!( egoistamente nos alegramos un poco........) 10 besitos para Dax y 100000000000 para ti que te los mereces! yo no hubiese aguantado ni un dia!!
17th November 2008

animo
Animo,, no dejes que un mal momento acabe con vuestro sueño,lo mismo da en bici, tren, barco o avión, lo bueno de todo esto es que estais juntos y viviendo una experiencia que ya quisieramos nosotros, recuerda que los primeros dias de bici son los peores, y (por lo que leo en otros blogs ) tendreis dias con ganas de tirar todo por la borda y os aseguro que lo que cae por la borda es muy dificil de recuperar. Lo que hagais bien hecho estará. Cuidaros mucho. Un beso de toda la family.
17th November 2008

Don't give up...
Really don't.... Just take it easy to start with. Cycling is by far the best way to see any country. But wild camping is hard to start with. What with all the water you need to carry and food etc etc. A few little things willl make the trip a lot easier as you built up your strength. Start off with a (short) destination each day. One where you can camp at a campsite or stay in a motel and get clean and sleep well have unlimited water to drink. Once you've done this for a week or two you'll find cycling easier and then can look at wild camping etc. Other things; Are you wearing cycling shorts??? You don't need the skin tight Lycra ones the baggy one will be fine, makes it much more comfortable for your bits. Do you have a womens seat? My girlfriend swears by them. Cycling gloves? Takes the tension off your wrists. Definitely get skinny tyres. The ones your using are far too thick for sealed roads. Skinny tyres use much less energy are will be far far easier for you. Make sure there pumped up to the max. Get rid of your helmets (I know its illegal in Oz) but a big wide rimmed hat keeps the sun off all sides of your face and is much much better. Ride a few days. Then stops and chill for a few. Then ride again. My girlfriend had never cycled. We started at about 30kms a day, with a campsite and a good meal at the end of it. And three months later she could do 120km through rough roads in the desert. Take care and enjoy.
18th November 2008

thanks / gracias
thanks to all of you for your comments... I really appreciate the support right now... I hope this won't be my last "cycling adventure", but I think I should have done thing a bit differently and, maybe, have trained at home and do some free camping there... I don't want to "suffer" any more in this trip because it's my honeymoon and I don't want to cry every day!!!... but I am quite confident that, once we're back home, I'll try again in more "familiar lands", but I think it was a bit too ambitious to try and cycle half the world on my 1st bike trip... Once again, I really want to thank you for your comments, as I am feeling a bit blue and they are very appreciated... Gracias a todos por vuestros comentarios... de verdad agradezco el apoyo ahora mismo... espero que esta no sea mi ultima "aventura ciclista", pero creo que deberia haber hecho las cosas un poco diferente y quiza haber entrenado en casa y haber hecho un poco de acampada libre... no quiero "sufrir" mas en este viaje ya que es mi luna de miel y no quiero llorar en ella todos los dias!!... pero tengo confianza en que, una vez que volvamos a casa, lo intentare otra vez en "tierras mas familiares", pero creo que fui un poco ambiciosa de mas al querer recorrer medio mundo en bici en mi primer viaje ciclista... Una vez mas, gracias por vuestros comentarios, ya que estoy un poco triste y los aprecio mucho en este momento...
19th November 2008

unfortunately Australia is probably one of the worst places to trial this :) Places are so far and few between.. and it is HOT!! and IT is summer and there will be many storms soon...Europe where towns are closer would probably be better to trial this Good luck with it all and I would think it would take a week or two to find your groove.. banchory to the bospherous had your similar problems at the begining while they were still in England
21st November 2008

No shame in trying
I agree on most things above written by Stayloose (apart from thin wheels. I personally feel much more comfortable with thick ones so that now and then I can go cross-country too without too much risk of punctures). You tried. That's something. I'm sure that in a few years time you'll feel the need of trying again and that time you'll do a bit of training beforehand and will last far more that 200 kms. Marco PS: When will you be in Thailand?
22nd November 2008

hola primitos estoy leyendo los comentarios ,y veo que no recibisteis el ultimo que os escribi en donde os mando toda mi energia para seguir pedaleando y para decirte a ti Almu ,que tu maridito no te pedira el anillo ,lo que te pedira es que te vuelvas a casar con el otra vez.Os mandamos toda la fuerza y animo que necesitais y seguir con toda la ilusion este precioso viaje muchos besos de nosotros 4 y de abuela Clara. PD: me ha encantado lo que os escribe Aimar por eso te lo repito El exito es la habilidad de ir de fracaso en fracaso sin perder el entusiasmo.Venga adelante"
25th November 2008


mucho ánimo y sonrisas, ya sea xa ir en bici, en triciclo o en la mobylete de mi abuelo. pasadlo bien y llenaros los ojos y los sentidos xa luego contarnos. i´ll see you guys, xx

Tot: 2.763s; Tpl: 0.077s; cc: 38; qc: 151; dbt: 0.0897s; 2; m:saturn w:www (104.131.125.221); sld: 3; ; mem: 1.8mb