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Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Day 20 & 21

Well, let me say that 4 star hotels are nice if you can affjord it. We lingered a bit and got a late start. Also, the breakfast was suck. Super bitter coffee and a soft boiled egg followed by a steep fjord ascent is not the best way to start your day. My stomach was unhappy.

The route 6 out of kolding is not so great. The start of it is pretty and goes on residential streets, so if you need to let your dog walk uphill *cough* or push your bike up the hill, you can.

I've been letting y'all believe that i'm Mr. Sporty McToughGuy, but, alas, i've pushed my bike uphill now and again.

Anyway, the 6 is not a route out of the fjord, but instead along it. This means really steep ups and downs. Also, it's along the margin of a busy national road. So i have a moment, as i speed downhill, of realization: I'm on a tiny bike, going really fast down a really busy twisty road with cars less than a meter from me and the road is wet and if i wipe out, i'm dead. Lots of squeezing of the handbreaks.

Of course, there were also uphills. Really steep uphills on the same busy street with no safe way to make poor xena walk it. It was slow going and unrelenting for 20k. Maybe when they say that denmark is flat, they mean on average. My trip started and ended at sea level, so really, i didn't climb at all.

We crossed to the Isle of Fyn. Those of you with your maps in front of you will note that this island lies between the jutland peninsula (the part attached to germany) and the island which has copenhagen. We came to the town of middlefart and got some food and stocked up on supplies. Xena, for example has a new leash on life. Her old leash got dropped in the woods on saturday. However, as i was shopping for muesli bars and dog leashes, i began to feel more and more ill. I came out of the store and sat at a table with my head down. If i had to bike anymore, i was going to vomit. Nicole got me a mocha wich kind of revived me. We went slowly to the tourist office, where exhaustion lead me to be kind of rude, alas. No hotels in middlefart take dogs. We had to backtrack, uphill to camp. The hills weren't steep, but to keep my lunch, i pushed my bike.

Went to sleep early. I think i might have eaten bad ice cream. We had stopped for ice cream the day before and i had one that was so good, that i wanted to describe it to you. But now, when i think of it, i feel really queasy. So no description. Think of something else!

Ok, so woke up the morning of august 21st at a campground in middlefart. Dedicated readers will recall that i was supposed to be leaving copenhagen today to return home. Didn't count on fjords or downpours or the sustained difficulty of biking in "flat" denmark.

I felt ok this morning, so we carried on to odensee, denmark's third largest city. (What is number 2?) This was 50-something k over "undulating" country side. Mostly not worth the effort, but nice views in the afternoon and coming in to odensee was actually pretty nice. i's a very bike-friendly city.

However, no day is without it's wrong turns and so right before getting to odensee we followed confusing signage on to a horse trail. It's the first time i've gotten a bike stuck in mud so deep that i couldn't just push it out. Came in to the hotel covered in mud.

Nicole had the brilliant idea of calling the tourist office at 16:00, so when we rolled in two hours later, we already had a hotel reservation. She's smart.

The rest of Fyn looks flat on the map, so tomorrow we'll get a map of the other island to discover whether we should just ride the train in or keep biking.

We're so close, i just want to bike, but not if i feel fjord sick again. And as it was pouring rain this afternoon and i was pedalling up an undulating hill, this began to seem suspiciously like work and not a lazy holiday. Also, we're behind schedule. So, we'll see.

And if you ever decide to cycle here, get more than 3 gears!

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