To Lagos, and a half time break - Vuelta a Iberia - CycleBlaze

November 3, 2019

To Lagos, and a half time break

Today’s ride

We’ve been observing a strange weather phenomenon for the last five days.  Each evening we retire for the day worrying about how wet the next day’s ride will be, as the forecast predicts showers or rain for substantial periods of the next day.  And each morning, we wake up to a forecast that has significantly improved overnight.

This morning, it happened again.  The last of the rains ended just before we arose, and the day is forecasted now to be grey but dry.  We like it!

And a good thing, too.  Today’s short ride starts with one of the more significant climbs of the trip, and Rachael woke up this morning feeling raspy and wondering if she has a second cold coming on.  Wonderful - my cough, after lingering for over a month, has finally moved on to someone else’s lungs; hopefully they aren’t Rachael’s.

The climb isn’t as bad as we expected.  After a flattish mile we come to the base of the hills, pass a 10% sign, and start climbing.  After the first steepish lift though it eases off a bit and we face a fairly steady 7-8% grade for the next three miles before gradually topping out.  The climb is made easier by perfect conditions - cool, with a modest tailwind.  We expected worse, and have gotten just a bit hill-shy from lack of practice.  Just a pair of whiners.

Near the top Rachael scares us a bit when she stops to recover.  She’s suddenly feeling nauseous, and anxious that she really is coming down with something.  It soon passes though, we crest the summit, and start dropping toward the Mediterranean.

Our ride starts easily, with a flattish mile east as we approach the hills. Just enough to loosen us up.
Heart 3 Comment 2
Patrick O'HaraWhiners? Not a chance. Just go back and take a gander at your French Alps trip a few years back! You've paid your dues on the big cols of Europe!
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Patrick O'HaraThose would be the younger, tougher Andersons you’re thinking of. We brought the older veterans along on this tour.
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1 month ago
Well, yes, this could hurt a bit.
Heart 3 Comment 0
Over the top, views start opening up to the south. With most of our work done for the day, we face eighteen miles of gently rolling descent.
Heart 3 Comment 2
Ron Suchanek18 miles of gently rolling descent is just what the doctor ordered after climbing.
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Ron SuchanekAgreed. It’s the best cure for many ailments.
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1 month ago
And, we face an unplanned obstacle. Good thing it’s Sunday morning, or we might have been facing a long, hilly detour here.
Heart 2 Comment 2
Jen GrumbyI would like to title this photograph "Rachael vs. Komatsu".

Desvio, schmesvio! Glad it was Sunday so Team Anderson, lead by Fearless Rachael, could walk by that tractor and say, "Até logo, Senhor Komatsu!" "Adeus!"
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Jen GrumbyThe censors are uncertain about this post, Jen. Is schmesvio a profanity in some language we’re not familiar with?
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1 month ago
Rocky, but no problem for Rocky today as she just pushes through. Sorry about the image quality, by the way - I somehow got the camera onto a weird setting here.
Heart 4 Comment 2
Andrea BrownHow did you guys get here to Myanmar so fast?
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1 month ago
Scott AndersonTo Andrea BrownHey, you don’t have a corner on the bad roads over there.
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1 month ago

Video sound track: I’m Amazed, by My Morning Jacket

In Lagos

We arrive in Lagos just past one, with about an hour to kill before our scheduled arrival at Paula’s Apartments, our planned home for the next three nights.  We fill it and ourselves with grilled chicken dishes at a cafe a few blocks from the apartment, and then head over to Paula’s place.

Originally we had planned to stay tonight in Sagres and follow it with two days in Lagos.  After making our Lagos reservation though, we changed our minds and decided we’d rather go straight to Lagos and stay there for three nights.  We contacted our host requesting to add a day to the front end of our reservation, and we got a positive response.

When we arrive Paula answers the door, we introduce ourselves, and she looks perplexed.  We’re not on her guest list for today, although she does have us scheduled to arrive tomorrow for a three night stay.  She understands that there has been a misunderstanding, but unfortunately she is fully booked for tonight.

Crap.

Paula has a friend that lives four doors down the street who lets rooms, so she calls her up for us.  Yes, she has a room available; but is away from home at the moment.  She will arrive at Paula’s in an hour to meet us.  In the meantime, Paula invites us to sit by her pool and chill out until her friend arrives.

An hour and a half later, there’s no sign of her friend.  We lose patience, find a different place nearby to book, and let Paula know we’ve changed our plans.  She’s very nice about it, apologetic, offers to let us keep our bikes here in case there’s no room for them at the next place.

We start to leave, but can’t.  The door from her patio to the street won’t open.  We find Paula, she tests it herself, then looks panicky.  Some other guests have apparently gone out and locked the door behind them, and she’s not sure she has a key with her.  We’re trapped!  Paula rushes inside, returns a minute later with a relieved look on her face and a key.

Our new lodging for the night, Infante Guesthouse, is only three blocks away.  We’re greeted by Isabel and her German husband, Marek.  They’re an altogether charming and lovable young couple who usher us in and then spend the next twenty minutes going over the map of the city with us, helping us to plan out our stay.  Their only space for the bikes is on their roof, two flights up, but they aren’t bad - and Marek carries Rachael’s bike up himself.  We’d like to adopt them, and are sorry we aren’t staying here for the whole three days.

So if you’re in Lagos, check out Isabel and Marek’s place.  It’s in a perfect location in the heart of old Lagos, just a block or two from the first slave market in Europe (How’s that for a draw?  Now you’ll really want to come here.), with the most agreeable hosts you could wish for.  And, Isabel proudly points out that the very scenic church bell tower just outside our window does not chime and won’t wake us up, and we’re right around the corner from the only cafe in old Lagos that opens early for coffee.  Nirvana!

Isabel and Marek, the owners of Infante Guesthouse.
Heart 4 Comment 1
Jen GrumbyCan't wait to read more about Lagos and see more photos. If these smiles are any indication, I think you're in for a wonderful Half time break!
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1 month ago
The lovely and blessedly silent bell tower of Santa Maria Church stands just outside our window.
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Half time

We’ve just passed the halfway point of the tour.  With a three night stay in Lagos and no plans to hop on our bikes while we’re here, we’re declaring a half time break from the blog.  We’ll drop in a photo album at the end of our stay to help you decide whether you’d like to come here yourselves, but other than that we’re going dark for the next two days.  We’ll see you later.

Oh, one last note before we take ten: Rachael feels fine this morning, perfectly normal.  False alarm.

Heart 0 Comment 1
Jen GrumbyThere you go, continent-hopping again.
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1 month ago

Ride stats today: 24 miles, 2,200’; for the tour: 1,344 miles, 72,200’

Today's ride: 24 miles (39 km)
Total: 1,344 miles (2,163 km)

Rate this entry's writing Heart 7
Comment on this entry Comment 1
Jen GrumbyCongrats on 2,000+ kilometers and so glad to hear Rachael feels better.

Here's to Happy Healthy Half Time in Lagos!
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1 month ago