Friday, April 23, 2010

Eruptive travel plans

Yes I made it to Dalby! With Iceland's Volcano erupting last week things weren't looking good for many people getting to Dalby Forest in England for the first World cup of the year. My journey began monday as one of the 27 international flights that were allowed to land in Germany that day. The flight that was scheduled to leave 30 min before mine was canceled, and although they checked me in to the flight they would only check me as far as Frankfurt, not Manchester and wouldn't actually confirm my flight.

Waiting at the airport the flight got pushed back an hour and it wasn't till we were actually flying south of Iceland and the skies were beautifully clear that I was confident we would actually land in Europe.

Tuesday was a lot of hanging out at the airport. Luckily for my sanity I found wireless and coffee and was able to keep an eye on Manchester airport and German airspace to see if either would open soon. Nope. I grabbed a hotel and took my bike for a spin. Waldek would hopefully arrive the next day and we'd drive to England via a ferry.

I got to the airport Wednesday in time to get the last Van. Although we had a reservation, they would give our vehicle choice to first come first serve so I signed up for the 9 passenger van and hoped Waldek would arrive! Our mechanic Zak wasn't able to get over, but Waldek got in just an hour after scheduled and we made a mad dash to get on the road in time to make our Ferry. We got to the sold out Ferry with 10 min to go.

Once on the boat it was a great way to travel. The ride took about 10hrs but there were restaurants, cinemas and sleeping rooms. I had my first sleep on a boat and got in a solid 8+hrs of sleep, before they were announcing it was breakfast time.

3 crappy coffees later we were off the boat, had visited Hull a bit and were on our way to Dalby where Georgia and Katerina would hopefully be arriving from the flight into Manchester. As it usually does all worked out...except for Zak's arrival and we were moved into a great little house on a sheep/horse farm.

The course is pretty cool. I did my first lap solo and had a couple moments where I was a little spooked to try some drops or steep ride ups, but after I got over the mental bit I had a blast and am looking forward to Sunday's race.

Internet and phone reception are pretty absent, but I'll try to keep in touch guys. It sounds like almost all Canadians have made it, or will make it to Dalby and the weather is awesome so should be a fun weekend.

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