D2: 徐闻 - 覃斗 - China Blues - CycleBlaze

August 22, 2020

D2: 徐闻 - 覃斗

Today was rough. It started out really good with an excellent first breakfast (oatmeal in the room) and an even better second breakfast (a youtiao stick donut, black sesame porridge, and a hard boiled egg) at a market stall. There were old buildings from at least three different centuries, daytime street opera being performed in a park by the smallest opera troupe I've ever seen (two performers and a guy with an electric keyboard), even a Coke 0 from a convenience store.

But the GPS wasn't behaving (it wouldn't be until nearly lunch time that I figured out that a recent update had changed the power consumption settings to disallow it from running in the background) and, instead of telling me to turn, kept announcing in a toneless voice in the middle of my music "The GPS Signal is Weak" even though my tracker was having no problems at all and opening up Maps clearly showed me as being wherever I was.

Then, by virtue of my intentionally choosing back roads, I swapped easy grades for beautiful scenery and, as I somehow forgot to fill both bottles in the morning, I ran out of water. Once I found a town and food and hydration and got myself motivated enough to keep enjoying the beautiful day, I was greeted with torrential downpours, a missing screw on the mount for my handlebar bag, the twist shifter for the Rohloff not wanting to stay in place on the handlebars, getting lost, and a really huge quantity of flies while I waited for the ferry across Liusha Bay.

It was not a bad day. I need to emphasize that. But it was a rough day. I'm in terrible shape, every muscle in my body is complaining, I got angry at stupid things like insects or the music not connecting.

The hotel I'm staying at in Tandou remembers me from 2 years ago. I didn't remember if she'd let me behind the counter last time (journal says she did) but she didn't think it was really all that necessary for me to do any kind of registration at all when a glance at my passport confirmed that I had an ID of some kind with my face on it, and a quick "you haven't been overseas in the past 14 days, have you?" was met with a "you do know the border is closed to non-Chinese citizens?" (which she likely didn't); then we talked about her son who is in his first year of university and who would be the first family member to go to university if not for her younger brother having the poor taste to have a child the same age as her son and for her nephew to also get admitted to university. 

The words are a complaint but the pride is there that both her son and his cousin are going to be escaping rural life.

Today's ride: 64 km (40 miles)
Total: 79 km (49 miles)

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