28 March 2007
We returned back to Munich last Saturday the 24th after spending a week in Mallorca or as most other countries know it...the Balearic Islands. We traveled there with our 3 time a week spin class and a few other people.
Saw a lot of this action
Having never been to Mallorca, neither one of us had an real idea what to expect. We'd heard various rumors that it was basically "Germany South", a roadie paradise and many other things. As with most other places you've never been or things you've never done, it's hard to wrap your brain around a thing till you've seen it or done it. Some friends told us that at this time of the year there are up to 20,000 cyclists roaming about the island. I now believe it. Everywhere you go or look there's someone or a large group of someones roaming around via road bike or on their way to a trail via mountain bike. It's pretty insane.
These huge windmills are kind of the symbol of Mallorca
Beautiful mountain views
This is where we stayed for the week. Grupotel Gran Vista in Can Picafort which is located on the Northern end of the island. We rented bikes through Hürzler Bike Shop. We'd planned to take our own, but were told at the last moment that there was no room on the plane for more bikes. We'll know better next year. Kera's was pretty good. All Ultegra (new). Mine was old 105 that didn't shift well. Obviously, I survived though.
Our daily tally -
Sat. 3/17 - 45 Km Arrived, waited 1 hr. for luggage and more for bikes. Short ride.
Sun. 3/18 - 98.62 km. Beautiful flat-ish ride. With a big optional climb in middle.
Mon. 3/19 - 135.02 km. Ride in to the brutal wind & mountains. I bonked terribly.
Tues. 3/20 - Took the day off, rented a car and drove around the island 60 winds & snow.
Wed. 3/21 - 104.89 km Flatter ride to the ocean in the East.
Thur. 3/22 - 74.92 km Slow ride with larger group.
Fri. 3/23 - 134.5 km & 2300 Vert. meters. Killer ride! A 1 hr. 15 km climb.
Sat. 3/24 - Flew home
Each evening after riding and before dinner we'd hit the "Wellness" room. Basically, a fitness, massage, sauna, whirlpool, swimming pool area. Ah yes, this is what separates the Euros from the Americans. Out of the 50-100 people in there at any one time, there were just a few with any soft of clothing on whatsoever. Oddly enough, it only takes a couple of days before it becomes "normal". In reality, since most of the world is less afraid of nudity than we Americans, I'd say we're the "Abnormal" ones instead.
Anyway, the Whirlpool did wonders for the sore muscles. It's just became habit to head down there after getting back from our rides. Also a cool chance to sit around and talk with people. Yes, you can do that without staring at boobs or peoples laps. Breakfast & Dinner were pretty amazing affairs with a 1000 or so people rolling through for each. For the massive amounts of food they turned out, these folks do a really good job.
We'll definitely be going again next year. We'll have to see whether it's for two weeks or just one like this year.
Random other news.
A) I got a tattoo done the day before we headed to Mallorca. For the design I had my buddy RottenMac combine two of my favorite things, coffee & singlespeeding in to one design. Yes, it hurt a bit but I love it and I'm really glad that I did it.
B) Found out today via an intermediary that 'new' mountain bike by Black Sheep is apparently on the way. Haven't heard a thing from them in months so I had to use someone else that they might respond to. That's the Reader's Digest version of the story. After I actually receive & build the bike up, I'll give you the rest of the story. For now, I'm just glad to hear that it's, in theory, going to be here soon.
My old Curtlo, should be on the way soon as well. Last I heard, it was heading off to paint while we were in the States. That was almost a month ago, so I think that means it should be on it's way as well. Cross your fingers.
C) My cherished Sekei fixed gear bit the dust this week. I've been riding that old frame for about five years and I have enjoyed nearly every minute of having it. Not bad considering it was a free frame that I dug out of the basement of Midwest Cyclery when I worked there. Luckily, I just finished rebuilding my IRO Mark V fixie that will fill the empty space for awhile.
D) I'm about to head off for a second interview with Berlitz language school. I get to meet the school director today. We'll see how that goes. I'd be nice to have a couple more classes, especially early in the morning to fill out my week.
I got the thumbs-up from the school director and it looks quite likely that I'll be getting a call to go to training in mid-April. I can then work at both Münich Berlitz
E) I want to say thanks to all the anonymous people on Flickr from whom I borrowed Mallorca pics. The only one that came from our camera is the one of my tattoo. Our old HP Digital is too big to drag along on a 135 km road bike trip.
That brings me to:
F) We love to take pics. We especially love to take pics when we're out riding. We have an old HP Digital but it's Old, Big & Heavy. So, we're in the market for something quite compact, with a fair amount of ZOOM (for Kera) and quite durable. We're taking recommendations. Please let us know which one's you use and like or dislike. Thanks!
Lastly, I'm working on generating GPX files that you can pull in to Google Earth and then click - Play to follow our various routes through the week. That's only for the Tech/Cycling geeks. Hopefully, I'll get 'em posted in the next few days.