Up to this point and since being joined by Ellie and Charlie cycling progress has been very slow in terms of miles and as we left lake Bohinj and emerged from the thick blanket of cloud Ellie’s saddle clamp broke. Some temporary repairs were made with cable ties and paracord but they didn’t last long. We hadn’t any bolts long enough for a proper repair and so we found ourselves just over the border into Italy, near Trieste, in need of a bike shop on a Sunday; not a chance! That’s just not the Italian way, we would have to hold on until Monday morning as the opening times printed on our nearest bike shop confirmed.
It was decided that a pleasing combination of coffee, pizza, journal writing and Kindle reading would be the best way to pass the time, and, as we would be stationary for a while, Charlie took the opportunity to visit Trieste and check train prices. He liked the idea of crossing the Alps and cycling towards home but also I think we were going to slow for him as he only had a few weeks and wanted to get some miles done. We had been terrifically stagnant on the cycling side of things since meeting in Slovenia so I can understand him wanting to crack on a bit.
The only problem is I think he might have left at the wrong time because things started to get really good in terms of mileage, scenery, food, weather and just about every other observable parameter and all I could do is helplessly declared to Ellie the startlingly obvious; that everything had become brilliant and that Charlie had left at the wrong time. I really wanted Charlie to see this side of touring, I wanted him to try the seafood, snorkel in the sea and cover cycling miles through parched and dry Mediterranean terrain surrounded by figs, plums, apples and pomegranates. . . . and later, the best thing of all, burek! The cycling wonder-food that I discovered for the first time last year cycling a different part of the Dalmatian coast.