You are probably wondering what an olive tree has got tot do with two Dutch pensioners. Well, all will be revealed. Let me just tell you that today was a 2 pictures day, which considering that the weather was good and I have taken many pictures on rainy days is quite something.
Let’s start from the beginning. I left Seville quite early for my current standards, just before 9. I was pushed along by the new found confidence in my wheels. Which is just as well as the back one lost all pressure even before I got out of the city. After unpacking and taking the tube out I discovered that it had a hole , not due to a puncture though, just a hole. I changed it with my other new tube and cursed Decathlon for the poor quality stuff that they sell.
less than five mile later I was back to square 1, tyre deflated. After inspection this second tube had developed the same problem. At this point I started to doubt my choice of tubes. To be more specific the fact that I was using the tubes that fit my 700x32C tyre on the new 700x38C tyre. I have now, thanks to the magic of the interweb, confirmed that the real tube in this story is ME. Anyway, good thing that I realised that might have been the problem and decided to swap back to the spare 700x32C Marathon tyre I have, other wise I would have run out of spare tubes before getting out of Seville.
After this swap things looked up and just before I got to the junction for Las Cabezas de San Juan I saw in the distance in front of me what looked like two other bike tourists. They were very far away but they were obviously going slower than me as I was catching up with them. After a few minutes I was nearly upon them when they, obviously having seen me in their rearview mirrors, pulled over. I caught up and stopped and had a little conversation.
They were a Dutch couple in their mid sixties that had just cycled all the way from the Netherland and were also on route to the ferry to Morocco. Their goal was simply to spend a few months going around Morocco and then to return home. Mrs. was complaining about the limited time they had in Morocco, standard tourist visa is three months, and the fact that she would have wanted to come back to Europe later than that.
She asked me what I was going to do about that, and I explained that, at the rate I am going, a one month visa for Morocco would be more than plenty. We both wished each other luck and went our separate ways as they were stopping in Las Cabezas while I was carrying on to Arcos de la Frontera.
Things did not get better however as far as equipment was concerned. As soon as I left the N road I felt the back wheel being a bit soft and, right enough, I had another situation to contend with. This time it was of my own making. The tube I had used this time was the one I repaired ten days ago when I had my first puncture. I did not do a great job and the slow air leak was from under the patch that I had put on. I was now down to my last patched tube so as well as fitting it to the wheel I also patched properly the one I had just taken off and, for good measure, one of the other I had replaced in the morning.
You will of course realise that murphy’s law dictates that having so many spares now viable was the best guarantee of nothing else going wrong. And so it was all the way to Arcos.
Other than the tyre drama the day did not offer a great deal of opportunities for photography, the sole exceptions being the lovely and yet unharvested olive tree you see up top and meeting the reptile you see below in the middle of the carriageway.
Actually I caused the snake to have an accident. It obviously had been sitting on the road for a while but as it was not in the place in the road where the tyre land he was fine. Unfortunately a car came by just after I took the picture and to keep it’s distances from me moved to a position more central to the road with the effect of giving the snake a bit of a hair cut. It was moving fine afterwards and while I’m sure it was a bit confused these creatures have been around a lot longer than us and are way more resilient than we are.