Once I left and got back on the cycle path, I was into the woods very quickly. When I encountered an incline and got off Rowenna to push her up the hill, I noticed there were small froglets jumping everywhere. Every speck I examined would jump but as soon as they kept still they effectively merged into the background. These froglets were only about 1cm long (if that) and were all over the track – in fact, the entire forest was jumping with them. My walk became a meditation of trying to be careful where I pushed the wheel of Ro, and where I placed my feet. Eventually I got back on the cycle and it seemed inevitable I would squash a few, despite my efforts.
I stopped at a restaurant soon after emerging from the woods, to mourn the squashed froglets and maybe get something to eat. Unfortunately the kitchen closed just as I arrived, so I had a coffee instead and got this journal out. The cyclists sat next to me asked where I was from. They were very excited to hear of my adventure and explained they’d been to Cornwall on holiday last year – showed me photographs of Newquay. They insisted on buying me coffee – which was really lovely and I was also impressed by their daily cycling tally of 100km. They were called Reich and Dietmar from the Tyrol and come to this area regularly in the summer as it’s not far to drive.
Several photos later, I move on, to be greeted warmly by another cyclist who rides alongside for a while, before moving off in another direction. Then I pass a whole row of cyclists who are sitting in a bus shelter. They all wave as I ride past.
Feeling the glow, I stop again for a sandwich and to hide from the rain. I get an ice coffee that looks like an a birthday cake! I could get used to this treatment!
Wish I hadn’t drunk it though because shortly afterwards, whilst riding along I started to feel nauseous and incredibly tired and heavy and achey all over –
[NOTE – I gave my journal to Nina to take back to UK – tearing off last few pages that I hadn’t recorded on macbook – and promptly mislaid them. This means from here to 22nd June relying on my unreliable memory – ie, shall have to make it up! Update: found it – bottom of solar-panel bag.]
After only 16miles or so, I saw a camping place called Thermenland in Fürstenfeld (near a swimming pool/Thermal park/complex) and decided I needed to get the tent up and go to sleep. And that’s just what I did. I got the tent up, crawled inside and went to sleep in my clothes for about 4 hours – woke up, got the bags inside the fly sheet and climbed out of my clothes and slept for well over 12 hours altogether. Still felt a bit achey when I woke up – and I put it down to a rather hot and swollen insect bite on my arm, because, as it got better, I felt better.