7. All change.

It’s Sunday and the day of the parade, but rewind to last night. We returned from the beach and cleaned up. We were advised that security had been teling camoers that locals may try and get on camp or even raid unattended tents during the last night. As a precaution we packed up some of our kit and locked away valuables before making our way to the entertainment area. It was by far the busiest night with Fun Loving Criminals headlining the evening. We started on the beers, primarily because we needed to use up the excess beer tokens we had. Always aware that we would be needing to ride early in the morning. Colin returned to his tent first, exhausted from the days riding. He more so than us as he had been team leader for the excursions and as such had to concentrate more than either myself or Raven. In the great scheme of things Colin has been a legend. Next to faulter was Raven, her day had also been entertaining with her first venture into the sea. She will admit to not being a good swimmer, or even a swimmer but she braved the massive undercurrent and waves to show she could do it. She has been great fun, with her good looks she attracts plenty of attention and her happy go lucky nature makes her fun to be around. I went back to watch FLC’s and was amazed to see they were really ageing. The one track I recognised was Scooby Snack, used in Pulp Fiction. But they were struggling with a crowd that really preferred hard rock. Quite often the lead would call out to the crowd expecting a response and was met with silence. I don’t think he dared to hold the microphone to the crowd for them to sing along. I went to the second stage for a short while where a much better, in my opinion, group were banging out some well known rock anthems. However it was just a few minutes before I was also feeling the draw of my bed. The constant hum of bikes growled over the thumping base of the music and raised voices of drunken revellers. Every now and then a biker or two would see who could hold there bikes on the rev limiter longest. None of this affected my sleep in any way whatsoever. It was just prior to 7am I dragged myself from my pit and began the task of stripping the tent and packing up proper. What happened next stopped me in my tracks. I am due to meet my one remaining team mate in Oliana, Spain in 3 days ready for a two day navigational exercise. We had been a three man team but on our first training session in UK we managed to injure Kevin who had to pull out of the event. Mark and I continued practice and prepare for the event. Mark had set out on Friday and already had a bit of a mare when he wasn’t allowed into France because his passport had been stolen after he left it on his bike saddle for the crossing. Once loaded back on the ferry and ready to sail home he located the passport in a ‘safe’ place he had secreted it. He even managed to get them to reopen the bow doors to let him off. He then rode some off road tracks towards Paris. I had chuckled at his passport incident, but today the message was far worse. Mark was in hospital, having pitched off his bike and broken 5 ribs. His trip is over, as is our challenge on the trails of the Pyrenees. I have messaged him back to see if we need to mount a rescue operation and notified the organisers of our teams demise. I am now awaiting an update before a re-shuffle of my own plans to fit in with people’s needs and my own holiday plans. Anyway back to better times. With the bikes loaded we said our farewells to new friends and had one last team photo. We rode into town looking for a café to get breakfast. I was going to stay to watch the bike parade but Colin and Raven needed to make tracks. I rode with them for 15km before deciding we weren’t going to find a café, I overtook Colin and pulled into the side of the road. We said out goodbyes and promised to stay in touch. I turned in the road and watched them disappear from view in my mirrors as I rode back to town. So again no pictures at this time but trust me when I say I have never seen so many bikes in one parade. The streets remain open but they are lined with spectators. When the bikes start to come through I expected the parade to take a few minutes. Some twenty minutes later the cavalcade of bikes up to 8 deep was still ploughing through the junction I stood at. Every type of bike and rider is accounted for in a bright array of colours all lit by the crystal blue sky. Even some children had got in on the ride on their little peewee 80’s. Some families, reminiscent of other countries crammed the whole family on one bike. I filmed and took photo’s (not that you will see any of them). And then as quick as it started it was over. I went to the shopping centre where I sit now typing this. Well there you go, you are as up to date as I am. (later) I decided not to head back into Spain but instead, against the advice of friends I revisited Albufeira. Well I found an expensive campsite where I sit now listening to the pub singer murdering some family favourite songs. It’s poor karaoke at best. Every song starts and ends with a ‘Yehaw’. Anyway I spent the afternoon at the beach and having yet another swim. My bright white body reflecting the sun directly into others eyes. I have to say I have a full bricklayers white T shirt tan. My arms are super brown as is my neck. I really was just wasting time in the hope that I would get word from Austin about my role, if any, in the upcoming challenge. At this time it has not arrived and I have resorted to asking HU members and Lois Pryce via Twitter to encourage him to look at his emails. I have had news from Mark. He was riding a trail in France when he hit a chain stretched across the path. He is in a lot of pain and hopes his travel insurance will sort recovery for the bike and his return trip home. I’m so far away its almost impossible for me to get to see him. He hopes to be mobile enough in 6 days to travel back home. Back to the bar here at the campsite. The pub singer has finished and the second half of the entertainment has started, the reptile show. Now if you own a bar and you want to clear it in seconds flat, employ a reptile handler to release snakes into the crowd. Honestly it has emptied with much screaming of children and adults alike.

Author: benjackson63

A new adventure biker just starting out on my blogging adventures.

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