Sunday, 28 November 2010

Swansea: The Reunion

Apart from almost forcing an unfortunate gent coming another way on his bike into the bushes, our ride into Swansea lacked real incident. We noted the large Amazon warehouse and new developments along the bay, and Dr Doug indulged in some welcome reminiscences about previous trips to Swansea and its western shores. Meanwhile, National Cycle Route 4 decided to hide among the dockside developments. Certain of our local knowledge we headed into town to find Jon and his oil supplies.

It started to get cold. We pulled over by the sea on the far side of Swansea and wondered where Jon might be. By the beach was the message. We called. We waited. We looked at the sea and the grey clouds. Doug's leg stopped bleeding. Jon texted. He was by the beach, near the dockside developments, just after where NCR4 petered out. Back we went, and found Jon on the beach. Reunited, we lubricated, told stories of our adventures, unfurled the Colgate University flag, and I took a quick leak behind the bushes.

Now, down to business. What was the plan? Our Travelodge ('Travelodge - Camarthen' as it advertised itself) was some distance away, in fact a train ride away. And then a further pedal-powered ride to St Clears, where the motel actually was. A nine-mile ride, or slightly less if we went to a near train station (Whitland, whose name I couldn't recall, and Jon's iPhone app refused to recognise). The thought of more riding was not enticing at this point. Trains were less than frequent as well. We also had the notion of hanging out in Swansea and meeting Doug's friend added to the mix. Perhaps we should stay in Swansea.

This became the plan.

Others, however, particularly those of the golf-loving variety, had the same notion. A nearby Marriott promised berth, but when Doug and I approached the reception desk, they changed their minds. Maybe we should have sent Jon in, who had changed on his arrival earlier in the day. Other hotels proved similarly unhospitable. And I discovered it is hard to find the right form of words for asking for three beds in a hotel, a double and a single at a pinch. Hunger, train times, the sense of wearing lycra in public, and a fear that we would be spending the night under a bush began to test Trois V's mettle.

But, it takes more than a golf-fan saturated seaside town to cause Trois V to go under. At last, a spot was located, thanks to the advice given by the reception desk of the main golfing hotel. We collected Jon's bike from the station, did our best with the cobbled roads, and headed east to the edge of town and a massive, euro-funded development that looked a little uneasy in the light of the economic times.

Bikes locked, Jon grabbed the single room, and we went down to meet some of Doug's countrymen.


Trois V!

1 comment:

  1. I think my favourite part was when I 'phoned the hotel by the station explained our situation, and was met with the question - 'are you a man, a woman, and another man?'

    No. No we were not.