Crash parties, not bikes

Trip Start Apr 17, 2006
Trip End Jun 14, 2006

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Flag of Argentina  ,
Wednesday, May 10, 2006

After the night sent from hell, I awoke feeling right as rain. Things had obviously come to a head: I had fought my D-day. There had been casualties, but it was the deciding battle and I emerged victorious. Take that, pesky gas-manufacturing bacterias, I ain't no cow with four stomachs and the sooner you know it the better! I tootled the few miles to the next town, and since it was the last place before the next barren mountain range, I decided to stick around and make sure I really had seen the last of my illness.

I looked for a place to have a celebratory return-of-appetite lunch and found a nice bustling little cafe with a couple of guys with guitars singing tangos - just the ticket. The waitress sat me at my own table, as usual, and I noticed that the other tables were full of big groups of people who all seemed to know each other. Then the guys with guitars broke into a tune that, no matter how lacking one's language skills might be, is unmistakeable: yes, that's right, I was crashing some guy's birthday party. A hairy cyclist wearing peculiar legins was probably not quite the backdrop he'd have chosen for his celebratory photos.

I decided to end my bout of diarrhoea as it had begun, with a lomito (showing quite considerable courage, I'm sure you agree). I wanted to show the bug that no matter how many painful hours on the toilet it may have committed me to, I would remain ever defiant.

Afterwards, I stocked up on supplies for my trip into the mountains, where I had been advised to expect that there was absolutely nothing whatsoever (and was determined on this occasion to heed the advice). The National Park, where I could camp, was 40 miles away and 2000m up in the clouds, so I was going to have quite a day. My vow to take it easy had suffered a tragically early death.

Beard status: I'm coming to realise that aspirations of growing a handlebar moustache might be overambitious.

Miles munched: my mentor, Adam, reading about the day of cycling that committed me to a day in bed, passed to me the following piece of advice:
Don't think of it as 68 miles, think of it as over 100 km. 68 miles sounds
crap. 100 KM sounds herculian. When you hold court and gas about your
achievements upon your return you should bear this in mind. Admiration, and,
dare I say it, adoration, comes easier with the conversion to metric and the
subsequent increase in the figures. Response may ensue along these lines:
'100 km, did you say? In one day you say? And you didn't stop for elevenses
after your second breakfast?! And you only needed a week to recover in a
only a moderately priced two star hotel?! What hardships! Good lord call Mr
Guiness and tell him to bring his book of records, I feel like a bit of a

Now lock me in the stocks and stone me with cabbages if that isn't the sort of vignette that you want to ravish over and over again.
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