Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Day 5: Morgan's Bay to Mazeppa Bay

Today, we set out early from Morgan's Bay to allow time to complete the punishing 80-km route, with its deep sandy trails, seemingly impossible climbs, and more stream crossings than I could count. It got so hot that I worried for the first time in my life about the possibility of suffering heat stroke.

At about 1:30 PM, we made an unplanned stop at a remote community store that soon teamed with young children as we turned onto the road. We interacted with many of them for some time, and were treated by several young girls to a beautiful renditon of the song, Shosholoza.

As I understand it, the song speaks to the sadness of former Rhodesian miners separated from their families for work in South Africa. The kids allowed us to snap their pictures, which often led to our being mobbed moments later by our subjects anxious to see themselves on the small screen. They giggled excitedly after each shot.

Team Orange had a number of delays during the route today, including a severe case of dehydration that required medical care, and a nasty endo that pitched a rider over the bars and violently to the ground. Both are ok now but we can all see why Enduro Africa has a 10% attrition rate.

A third delay involved yours truly, when I'd lost control of my front end during another steep descent. I was pancaked to the ground with my bike pinning my foot just beneath its rapidly spinning rear tire. I credit the fall to exhaustion: It occurred an hour after I'd drained my 5-liter water supply and a 1.5 liter soda. My focus and bike control quickly melted away in the heat and never fully returned.

I suspect that I may have suffered from the fall a hairline fracture to my left foot. But I'm not injured enough to quit. An ibuprophen and a much anticipated day working with TouchAfrica to renovate a school, and I'll be right as rain.

All for now.

Photo credits: Andrew Pawley, Andrew Forsyth


Anonymous said...

Andrew, fascinating. Your descriptions conjure up images of our trips to Africa. I can see the small towns and kids now. The snake part - no thank you. Sounds like today was particularly challenging - please take care and enjoy your day working on the school.

Matt Felkin said...

hope the ankle is ok andrew !! im off to the store to get reydration sachets as we speak , bet your still loving it though .... dont forget to drink plenty .. thanks for all your write ups ..keep them coming mate

Anonymous said...

From Lorraine Poxon.............sorry to hear about your ankle, try and rest it as much as you can (i know that sounds easier said than done!) enjoy your rest day renovating a school, I think Mike has been looking forward to this the most! it may help to strap your foot up for the ride, but I guess you have probably done that, and you can put paracetamol with ibruprofen they work together nicely and you can spread them out, ie 2 brufen, an hour later 2 paracetamol..........it helps with the pain threshold etc.............(providing you are not allergic to any of them!).......ok enough nursey bits, take care on the road, say hi to my gorgeous husband Mike give him all our love and tell him to ride strong and safe!, I fly to SA tonight, so may see you at the airport monday! best wishes Lorraine xxxx

Daina said...

Suspected hairline fracture?!? Hmm, I don't think that was in the plan! Take care of yourself!!!