I’m a nervous cyclist at the best of times (understandable after a six year hiatus in biking) so I was briefly optimistic as I manipulated the bike down my narrow staircase to the street. Google maps had diligently informed that the ride was 8km and would take 28 minutes but I planned to leave myself some extra time so that I wouldn’t be rushed (and would have time to sip a chai latte from Shells Café before class).
From my regular journeys back and forth to Standhill on the bus, I knew the route was flat... or so I thought. Turns out it’s a torturously unrelenting low-grade hill the entire way. A few minutes in, my legs were burning and I was gasping for air – apparently I’m not as in shape as the deluded vision of my “active lifestyle” would lead me to believe. Once out of the town, I kept stopping to rest while pretending that I was taking pictures of sheep to maintain my roadside dignity as cars zoomed past (classy, right?). All the while, their motorized bliss being rubbed in my face.
After 40 minutes, I nipped into a driveway and checked my phone. Surely, I was almost there. Peering in disbelief at my phone, Google was telling me I had another 11 minutes to go... I was only two-thirds of the way. I feared that I could not make the last 11 minutes, which undoubtedly would be longer given how long I’d already been pedalling. At that moment, I realize that if I got to surf class, I’d surely drown because my legs would be too fatigued to trudge out against the waves or even pop up on my board... let alone carry me back home afterwards. So I nonchalantly texted Eddie (the surf instructor), Something has come up. I’m not going to make it in time today. Is there class tomorrow as well? and then turned my bike around and headed home.
As I sped downhill, I couldn’t help but laugh to myself that of all the trials and tribulations of living abroad, the thing that has pushed me closest to the edge is a bike ride!
Nice to meet you...
I'm Andi (hence the blog name). I'm a travel aficionado, passionate eater, tireless explorer of internet rabbit-holes, and amateur thinker. Join me as I give it all up (ok, that's a bit of an exaggeration) and go around the world on a mid-career "soul sabbatical" & year-of-learning to figure out what to be NEXT when I grow up. Won’t you grab a cup of chai and stay a while?
Learn More >