Back down south, via Inverness

Posted: March 30, 2013 by Ben Weber in Cycling, English, Training
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Banks of the River Ness

While waiting for the hard drive and the CF disk to be recovered (with the tecnicians now!! Hopefully should only need one more week or so to come back… hopefully they manage to get all the data!), I remembered that we had a few photos from Inverness that we took on a spare CF disk. I think I talked a bit about Inverness when we were going up through it, but this time we were coming down from the Orkney Islands, where we had met up with my mother.

Going back down south to Inverness from Thurso after we left the Orkney ferry, we took the bus rather than the train, though we would get a sleeper train down to London. It meant there was a bit of a hassle as we had to put the bikes into boxes to be able to put them into the bus – they wouldn’t let us take them otherwise, so we had to dismantle them and get them in one piece, and then reassemble them in Inverness to get to the train station.

Views back over the hills we had gone through and the coast we had cycled along. Very different going back down south by bus.

Views back over the hills we had gone through and the coast we had cycled along. Very different going back down south by bus.

The good thing about going by bus, however, was that we got to see over the route we had taken. The bus driver was crazy and was going pretty fast along the roads which seemed much narrower being in the bus than when were on the bikes – both Natalia and I looked at each other, thinking that we both must have been nuts to be going along that road with drivers like this! And am sure that this particular driver must have passed us a couple of times when we had been riding as the service from Thurso to Inverness was quite frequent. It was nice though – the two-and-a-bit day ride that we had taken from Inverness compressed into a four hour bus journey. This time we were able to sit down and relax, and enjoy the views as we went.

In Inverness we had a good seven hours or so to wait before the train, so plenty of time to put everything together, leave everything at the left luggage point in the station, have a nice long drawn-out lunch (at Zizzi again, where we had eaten on the stop-over coming up – as I say, definitely liked that place a lot), and then a stroll along the river. We could see mountains in the distance, mountains we had been and sweated through. It seemed a bit strange not having to ride any more, and the journey really was coming to an end with just a couple more days or so before going back to São Paulo. Both of us felt like we were in shape to continue for another couple of thousand miles or so, and I don’t think either of us really wanted it to stop and go home. So we sat down in evening on the sleeper train to London, much as we were pleased with ourselves for doing it, it seemed slightly anti-climatic… here we were going back down to London, and it will be a long time before we do anything like this again… Admittedly, the next time will over considerably longer distances and the challenges there will be fantastic, but all we could think about was that it would have been nice to have been able to keep going.

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