Tuesday, December 23, 2008
3 - The GDR Roller Coaster
An early morning view of the reservoir just out of Lima. Carl had left our room at about 3am. I got another 1.5 hrs of sleep and got started just before dawn.
I didn't feel great as Lima disappeared into the distance, and the dull scenery didn't help. This was the first anniversary of my dad's death. After a while I decided to crack open some music for the first time. This really lifted my spirits and my pace followed suit.
Day Eight: June 27
By now I was averaging 200 km per day without burying myself for more than an hour or so. Jenn was catching up whenever I stopped and we were looking forward to sharing the long lonely ride through the intimidating ‘Great Divide Basin’ desert.
Day Nine: June 28
I got up at 4 am to avoid the impending heat. There was a big day ahead but my stomach was in knots. I couldn’t eat. After a couple of hours’ riding we stopped for breakfast with David Blaine. He and Jenn had envious appetites. Without being able to take on fuel, I had to wave them farewell and settle in for 10 hours’ sick leave. Coming face-to-face with the possibility of failure was certainly the low point of the race. I wondered if this whole venture was a huge mistake.
Fortunately my digestive system gradually began functioning again and by early evening the wheels were turning, slowly, towards the desert. At 11 pm I crawled into my sleeping bag on the side of the road, coyotes howling in the distance, with a sense that all was well with the world.