I have never been one for naming my bicycle, Many do, but I have always found it a little silly. But now this machine has a name, The Evil One! Only Beelzebub himself with lots of help from all his most wicked little warlocks could possibly have concocted a machine so foul in its ability to inflict torment upon its victim. I long for hills so as to be able to stand and relieve the agony from all of my poor suffering parts, but none come. It has got to the stage where after sixty kilometres I long for a break every ten minuets. It feels as though my backside has been attached to a plank made from dark matter positioned on the bed of a fly press. The top of the press is attached to my shoulders and then pressure is applied in a manner so cruel that Vlad the Impaler would feel a twinge of sorrow for inflicting such harrowing distress. My hands don’t matter so much as they have gone numb after the first twenty kilometres. My elbows feel as though they are cracking but the pain in my forearms distracts from that. My feet convince me that some evil being has put hot coals in my shoes and other parts go scarily numb. Interestingly my legs are fine.
This is not to say that the Alta is a bad machine, it was simply never intended to be used in this way, and it is too small for me. If I lived in a city I would love to use this bike. It looks cool, it attracts attention wherever it goes, it is a joy to ride in a city, in short, it is a great bike to commute and pose on, and it would be a great training bike, it is simply not a tourer. Of course wearing a back pack does not help.
The good news is, I am in Thailand. I have a lovely room overlooking a beautiful river. I have a balcony where I sit now with a bottle of Singha beer. Colourful fishing boats are moored up and old men dressed in sarongs mend their nets. Life is fine. It would be a whole lot better if I were getting onto my old faithful steed tomorrow. What will I do next? Watch this space.