1.0 : Ha Noi : Since I’ve done the museums and walk daily along the quaint streets of the Old Quarter, BosMan, B1, B2 and I decided to go to the countryside. We really wanted to go further north to Sa Pa but it was too far (train ride and then van ride) and we won’t be back to the city until 5:30am Monday. Call time for work was 7am that day so we had to cancel our Sa Pa adventure.
We went to Handspan Travel and selected a tour. The only available day trip to the countryside was a cycling tour of Ninh Binh.
Cycling. Pause. I don’t bike. Panic. Correction I don’t know how to bike. Pride. Fight!
They said that we only need to bike 10Km for 2 hours. I didn’t have to be great in math to figure out that if worse comes to worst I could just run the thing and still have plenty of time to meet up with tour bus.
We drove out for 2 hours and visited first a couple of temples. The bike were assembled while we were out touring around the temples.
Pretty soon it was time to ride. I’ve heard about bike fit ek and how high the seat should be. I don’t care. I just wanted to be able to ride out and survive. I asked the guide the put down the seat as low as possible so that I could easily stand up when I would lose my balance.
The bike was still to high! Oh yeah, confidence level that I will survive, near nil.
Discovery No. 1 : I do not know how to dismount. The bike would slow down and I would fall. It was frustrating and hilarious. Yup, I packed a lot of sense of humour for this trip.
After I figured out that clicky stuff that changes the gear things got a bit easier. I was riding a bit faster and balancing. It was simple course but a bit bumpy.
Discovery No. 2 : I’m a big chook. Whenever somebody would pass me or when I see coming towards me I fall. I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to all the households whose fences I probably scraped and to all the trees and hedges I bumped and squashed.
The view as promised was fantastic. When I wasn’t clinging to the handles for dear life, I was awed. Now more than ever, I want to take time and visit Halong Bay.
The ride was torture. I was so tempted to quit and just run it but since I haven’t died yet I figured I should just pedal along at my own pace. The group was prolly worried but I shooed them away. It was easier to concentrate when I was riding solo.
Discovery No. 3: I knew it already. I learned it the hard way the last time we biked in Boracay. If I look at something, the bike will head to that direction. And when the car, the dog, the tractor and the countless motorbikes came at me, the bike will take a life of its own and head towards what ever is coming at me. I think I scared a few locals.
The highway. No way. The last 500m was in a national road. I dismounted and told the guide that I was just walk my bike to the restaurant. I was tired and the last thing I needed was a bus to drive pass. I was ready to call mom and get rescued.
An ice cold coke was waiting for me when I got to the restaurant. Thanks BosMan.
0.1 : Tarlac : Last week, I was brave enough to go near another bike. After a few attempts, I gave up and spent the day beside the pool. I was told it was a good ride. Good view and challenging course.
But a day spent beside the pool wasn’t shabby either. 🙂