Wednesday, June 3, 2015
Michael has had some new experiences in Canada during the last days. Now it is time to cycle egain. Read the report:
"We get ready after we wake at 7:00 AM. We check out and go for breakfast. Our room is inspected before we leave so we can get our $100 deposit refunded. The weather is nice but it looks like it’s going to rain.
I eat something at A&W and then buy some bread at the Dollerama. Outside the store we meet a 90 year old war veteran who helped liberate The Netherlands in the Second World War. I sincerely thank him and offer him $5 for a coffee and a cookie. He seems very pleased with this, which makes me glad.
We visit an Outdoor Store in Winnipeg before we head out to Portage la Prairie which is about a 90 km bike ride today. Unfortunately our GPS and Dave's route planner lead us to zigzag our way through the city. It's driving us crazy. The Outdoor Store is phenomenal! They sell everything except the bear-proof pack that I need to keep bears away from my food. They do seem to have things to lure bears but not to keep them away!
We don't reach Hwy 1 again until 12:20 PM to start our journey to Portage la Prairie. After a short way through the city we finally end up on the wide open plains and are grateful that the wind is in our favour. It is going well: we are able to pick up good speed and eventhough it keeps threatening to rain, it stays dry.
After a couple of hours we catch up to another cyclist. His name is Sann. He is Japanese and 21 years old. He is also on his way to to Vancouver and started in Toronto.
The three of us continue on together until Sann gets a flat tire. His tires are bad and almost thread bare; he really needs new ones. We fix the tire and keep going.
Finally we ride into Portage La Prairie and my knees are hurting terribly. When we’re stopped by people who are interested to know what we are doing, they end up giving us $40 for a meal. Since it is now 6:00 pm we go out to for pizza. In the restaurant we attract a lot of attention and everyone asks about the reason for our tour. Dave and Sann say: “We are supporting him because he is cycling to raise awareness for cancer and sarcoidosis and also as a tribute to Terry Fox.” When we want to pay for our delicious meal someone else has already taken care of it. We thank him and leave to look for some new tires for Sann which we find at Walmart.
We still have to find a place to spend the night. We agree to try and find a place to camp outside of town. Dave decides to knock on someone's door and asks if we might be allowed to camp on their property. We get permission to do just that and the people are really nice. We put up our tents and when our host comes to check it out, he promises to make us some coffee in the morning and arrange for some breakfast.We can hardly believe it: after all the trouble we've had in the last few days, we finally meet some great and wonderful people.
Tomorrow our destination is Brandon which is about 120 km. Today with all the detours we took we biked about 115 km. Time to get some sleep..."
Han Schomakers, editor
Translation by Sytske van der Veen