And I’m off! Not quite, since I’ll be cycling on Tuesday. First of all I’ll spent a few days in Alicante with my sister and my brother-in-law.
Actually, I need those few days to regain my nerves again. All went well with the packing of the bicycle. My usual bikeshop had a box and some bubble plastic to safely wrap the bike up. The band I used to play in still has a trailer and my mother-in-law (yes, I am going on a bike trip again, but not because my relationship has ended, as some people think) kinda took care of the ride to Eindhoven Airport.
So, no worries there, but when we got to my parents-in-law their place I saw that the box wasn’t that solid after all. The front tyre sunk through the cardboard a bit. We wrapped it up with tape as good as we could, but still it was in the back of my head. Off we went right on time. Nice weather, not much traffic. A hour too early we arrived at the airport. We had a coffee, but my anxiety about the box only grew. What if it would tear? What if they wouldn’t handle it with care?
The time for the check-in came. If I had deflated the tyres? Uh, no I didn’t. It wasn’t on the website. Oh yes, it’s clearly on the website, the woman behind the counter said. No use for a squabble, I had to make a little hole in the proximity of the tyres to be able to get to the valves. We brought the tape along, so while I cut in the box, my girlfriend went back to the car for the tape. The package was now lighter because there was less air inside, but we overcompensated it with a lot of tape. Very environmentally friendly… Flying as well. What the hell was I thinking of venturing a trip like this?
No turning back now, no time for second thoughts or whining. We fixed it as good as we could and put it on the line for odd-sized luggage. I prayed to many deities when the shutter went down again and my precious bicycle was out of sight.
Than I had to wait to go on the plane. While flying you can only think of the bicycle down in the luggage compartment. Is the box still in tact? Or better yet, the bicycle?
Itwasn’t all horrible, I had a place at the window. And it was a clear day, when we took off it was twilight, so you could see the many lights down where people fled home from their work like ants. To worry about your bike isn’t so bad as to worry about your mortgage, your squealing kids and your headaching wife.
And as always, everything turns out just fine. The box was there in one piece. My sister and brother-in-law were there and took me by car to their summer house. We had some wine and something to eat and of course a nice chat. We’ll probably have some more of that these coming days before I ride back north.