Everybody knows that while on tour overseas keeping up with training is not always easy. Yes, of course there is the occasional use of the hotels gym facilities but they are what they are, that is to say not always adequate. When possible, us cycling, we rely on nearby bike rentals. That too can be strategically demanding. Me, however I do my cycling where and when I can, and although I do not always find the last model, and I have to look hard to find my size, I try to make sure I get my training miles in.. See!
For our last night in Hungary we needed to be near the airport in order to easily catch a very early plane out of there. We discovered the Sarokház Panzio, a charming, very comfortable pension for the amazing price of $ 49 for the night. The restaurant provided a simple but tasty dinner, after pleasant afternoon chauffer driven tour to the imperial castle where so much of ” Sisi”s summer life took place. It was a very sweet way to say goodby and the warm attention of the owners and staff made this last day and night like a topping of whipped cream crowning a needed vacation filled with enjoyable moments in spite of a few misadventures. Get ready New York we are returning
Somebody must have leaked the news: The Louis are back in town. We arrived through a ride in the country side, back to Budapest late afternoon where millions seemed to have gathered to welcome us. What we music in every squares, loud church bells ringing and a spectacular fireworks illuminating skies et monuments by the Danube riverside.
Wow!!!! Really way, way too much. I know we deserve warm welcome. But this? Well it turned out that all the merry display of joyful celebration was not at all meant for just us, but rather the exuberant rememberance of the creation of the Hungarian state way,way back in the ancient time, when king Steven made this place a country for people who came from far away in the East to settle down and give a new dimension to Europe for ever. All right then, it still made for a very pleasant welcome back.
Well, with WOL date coming down to 10 weeks to go, the trip to Prague Could’nt just be about castles and churches, beers, wine and dumplings. Yesterday, I had to Czech some of the surrounding hills. The hotel we are staying, the Ametyst, may be a jewels in many respects, however, it’s exercise room sucks. The other day I found this really great and friendly bike store owner around the corner who rented me a bike for practically nothing. So, well equipped, I got myself ready the old fashion way: Up early before sunrise and the start of heavy traffic.
Trouble was the wheather man was not on my side and whereas sunshine had been our staple all week in Prague, that morning forecast was for more of the rain that had fallen all night.
I can be determined. Sometimes It has an allure of obstination and so as soon as I grabbed a delicious mini croissant and a good old dark brew cup of coffee, I took the first clearing in the fast moving clouds as my signal to mount my ride and headed down to the river, cautious over the damp cobble stones, in search of the riverside bike path I knew to be there. The ride itself was fantastic and I found my way to a few hills to spice up the flatness of the regular bike path. A long downhill took me back through a dense forest from a sleepy village perched at the top of some hill to the returning riverside path. After some odd 30 miles, I was back to the hotel in time for breakfast with Susan and our last touring day in Prague. My friends in New York will be glad to see me back not totally out of shape.
Wonderful, beautiful Vien, pristine and friendly on the surface covering menacing misgivings. Nothing really troubled the joy of being there again, perhaps for my last time. Nothing, yes. Not even getting my wallet stolen.
First time back in Vienna since the 1960’s. WOw! I feel like a spry vagabong once more. A vagabond with coins in the pockets this time around. Jet lag helps me to wake up at sun rise and to do a healthy work out before the day of touring loaded with delicious food and dangerous deserts. Sue is taken by the city charm and prestine beauty and the friendliness of the local. We will be here for a few
What you see here is the famous bridge that leads to East Island which between me and the lamppost I call “Morgan Island” because that is where those famous rich people once upon the time lived there. One of the many Gold Coast Mansion not well-preserved. We, the WOLUSA riders in training… we do look fantastically preserved.. Don’t you think?