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While waiting for the bike...

As the time for departure gets shorter (6 weeks and counting), the posts have gotten scarce, but things are beginning to shape up - let me share the good changes so far…

1)      The plane ticket has been purchased for departure on June 17th, 2006 with a return ticket for December 28th, 2006.  There was some time-based drop in price for my particular itinerary so after waiting and waiting for the price of the ticket to go down (and inadvertently screwing up my friend Stacey’s chance for getting a ticket) the price finally dropped and I made the plunge.  I’m really going!

2)      El Sol Language School will be my future home in Lima, Peru for one week while I attempt to grasp the Spanish language.  My spot is held for 4 hours of private lessons a day.  The private vs. group was a last minute decision based on need and circumstances.  If I were traveling with a group I would be more inclined to depend on other’s for their Spanish skills, but as I am traveling solo and have very specific things I’d like to learn about and discuss (as in “Please, oh please, can I camp on your land?” and “Can you show me how to cook that please?”) it seemed prudent to focus.

3)      The TrackStick was tested and returned.  It had some weird time issues that I didn’t like and the output data wasn’t raw data it was data based on some software calculations.  Also, after one use I couldn’t get the thing to turn back on – even after checking the batteries (don’t touch a charged battery with your tongue – it feels weird, bad weird) and then changing them just to be sure. 

4)      A Garmin 60CSx GPS unit was ordered which should come in a few days.  I’m still working on the power issues and hopefully someone on the nice sales team at Solar Place will get back to me in a few days.  I couldn’t decide between the 60CSx and the 76CSx so I went with the slightly cheaper one and the one that doesn’t float in water.  I hope I made the right decision!

5)      Most everything is purchased with only a few more bits and pieces to take care of.  Some items need to be returned like the very cool mirror that is supposed to go on end bars.  Silly me – I have end bar shifters – there are no mirrors going there.

6)      Bike shorts have all been tried on and a winner, the losers returned.  Again, many thanks to Jane at Team Estrogen for helping me out.  Team Estrogen understands that trying on clothes, especially cycling clothes, can take many, many attempts and have some special shipping thing worked out.

7)      There is an 18 year old, named Anton, who may work out to be a riding partner for a bit in Peru and Bolivia. 

8)   Parents have been told and although they didn't take it so well we are all still speaking.  It could be worse.  

9)  Work has been informed and an official Leave of Absence requested.  Unfortunately, there has been a regime change and while I've been assured that I am an invaluable resource, I won't feel comfortable without a signed agreement.  After all, if I've learned anything working for brokers...

David and I rode the Five Boro Bike Tour this past Sunday (Sunday, May 7th) and it was a blast.  Despite the annoyance of being stuck in massive crowds at stopped intersections, the excitement of being a pair amongst 30,000 cyclists was invigorating!  The route is mostly flat but this time even the parts that I remember as being more difficult were a delight to ride.  It’s so much fun to ride on roads that cars usually rule.  The weather was finally sunny after about 2 or 3 years of drizzle and chill, but with the nice weather brought less concentration among the troops and we witnessed more accidents then either of us had ever seen in a less pleasant weather ride.  I have to say my knees ached a little bit afterwards, but I’ll just take that as a sign to stretch and go a little slower when I’m loaded up.

But the BIKE still isn’t here!

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