Just when I thought the sun was going to stay out...
|The largest cactus I have ever seen. Taken outside Guillena on the Via de la Plata.|
After resting up and chilling out in Sevilla for a few days, the weather warmed up and the sun came out. My heart beat seemed to return to normal (no more palpitations) and I decided to do a loop around Andalucia.
The day that I left Sevilla it was beautiful. I stopped at the Roman archeological site of Italica on my way up the road and spent the night in pilgrim´s hostel in Guillena.
It started raining that night but it is still fairly warm down here so I thought I would get out and pedal anyway. It would only be 25 miles or so up to the next stop on the Via de la Plata. The first few K were fine and then the track began to look like this:
After about 500 meters, my bike started to look like this:
I kept telling myself, it will get better, the track starts to slope and I reasoned, the water will be running off and the track will become more solid. NOT! I have never experienced mud as thick, heavy and sticky as this. My wheels actually stopped rolling because of the mud that was building up under the rear rack and the front fork. That was the point of not using fenders.
So, I wised up and headed back to town. I passed a deep puddle now abouot the size of a pond and because people in Spain tend to use the countryside as waste disposal, I found an intact kitchen trash can and began pouring water over the bike from the pond. I don´t want to think about what might have been in the water. It was kind of close to an industrial area. I was able to scrape enough off to make it back to town and found a gas station with a hose. It took over an hour to clean it up. I took the bags and the wheels off and then discovered that even the brakes were fouled up. When I started cleaning those up , while standing out in intermittent downpours, I dsicovered that the brake pads had become so worn from the friction of the mud, they were unusable. This posed yet another problem. Then I discovered both tires were leaking air at an alarming rate. And I asked myself this question: What is the universe telling me?
I´ll keep you posted. Thanks for reading this...