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The Kindness of Strangers

with an acknowledgement to Kate Adie

semi-overcast -31 °C

There is no appropriate title for this short but very telling narrative. I would have liked it to have been original and written something like `The Sympathetic reactions from people I have yet to meet` Doesn`t have quite the same ring does it, so I`m sorry and grateful Kate and I hope you`ll forgive me.

Apart from Mantova, and my 10k walk carrying the damaged old Gal fully loaded into the city centre and then sleeping in lovers lane later in that same City and again early next morning continuing to carry the old Gal forward further around that City in my quest for a supplier of spare parts.... Well to be honest at the time it was ridiculous there was obviously very little hope of success.. But I did have a margin of appeasement. What I did receive in the end with help from some of the local population was a wheel that to be honest was not really up to the job, we all new that... But it might have worked... and in a sense it did, took me forward to Trieste, through Slovenia, and the length of Croatia, before dying as we crossed into Montenegro... Cost of wheel 23 euros... cheaper than the train fare, but on the down side far more inconvenient, no wheel, no forward progress... Bike shops in Croatia no! Bike shops in Montenegro no!. I have been told time and time again ``Montenegrans are far too wise to cycle in Montenegro`` Look at those Mountains if god wanted you to cycle then he would have given you circular feet... So here I am feeling much more round at heel, Oh I`m sorry, down at heel than I`ve ever felt before... I`d gone as far as possible on the old Gal and in her present condition she will go no further, she will be for the knackers yard.. No hooves equals no horse.. No horse, well it goes without saying - I`m now dead in the water.

I`ve been at the Autokamp Zelenika for two nights now, 1st day I travelled back to Herzeg Novi a large town, practically dissected it in my search.. Went to Zelenika after a tip off, nothing.. went back again to Meljine after a further tip off, losing 3 more spokes all on the back wheel.... This happened to the old gal in her slimmed down ``unloaded..`` condition... I was reluctantly beginning to think the unthinkable.. That my time on the road was up... It hit me like a punch to the throat! I couldn`t think, I welled up... Only one course of action open to me, other than giving up.. and that was Tippy, but she was in Thailand.. Not due to see me until Tuesday or maybe Wednesday or perhaps Thursday of next week.. certainly no time for her to go off shopping and all that that might entail... I opened my e-mail in a dispirited mood during that day.. I saw an e-mail from Charles.. Charles I hope you don`t mind.. I`m making you public... We had exchanged e-mails earlier in my journey, before I had reached Slovenia, he had suggested sights I should look out for.. Nothing again until yesterday when he wrote and said ``Can I help in anyway, perhaps with fundraising?``...
This when I`m truly on my uppers!.. Er Yes! I replied.... So I breath again.. With A.W. Cycles of Colliers wood, and Charles bossing them about. Charles getting the stuff and getting it to Tippy, well I reckon right now I`ve got an odds on chance of a rousing success........ Don`t you?.. I hope so.. Guys and Girls you will have to wait and see... Me? - I will be doing the fretting and the worrying... until the unfolding events reveal themselves for what they really are.

I am really looking forward to next Tuesday or Wednesday or Thursday of next week.. Perhaps now I will really get to Cyprus.. Oh I really hope so....

Posted by BikingBarman 08:48 Archived in Montenegro

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Well Brian, wishing you all the luck in the world on this one. Cyprus is expecting you and I'm sure I can smell a BBQ !!! Thinking of you as always

by Pension Pusher

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