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(11) It’s all about the bike – we mean hand…

June 15, 2012

Tuesday 12th June

Woke up to Sharon still in a lot of pain. We left our deluxe shed reluctantly (Sharon had managed to spread her stuff over each bed, the table and the floor – I believe this habit has not changed since her teenage years since her first ‘floordrobe’)

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Our accomodation seemed to be more suited to ducks…

We headed to the Arctic museum. It was fascinating seeing articles from early exploration of the North pole – those guys were tough!!

We had lunch outside of the museum and met a lovely Australian couple who were about to do a cycle tour down in the South of Norway.

We headed off to find a garage to get some fuel. As our bottle only holds a litre, we have to ask someone buying fuel to fill our bottle for us and then we pay them. The guy we asked kindly donated us a litre and wished us a happy stay! At the same time Sara was buying a small bottle of gas which was £10! We took it back and used our free fuel instead : )

Heading out of town, we called into an interesting pub that is only open during the day. We each tried a different ale – delicious but expensive. It claims to be the world’s most northerly pub.

Before crossing the bridge over to Kvaloy, Sara pointed out a keep fit class going on in a gym. Tim had a bit of a wobble, blaming his bike.

Found a great campsite just off the roadside and watched Bridemaids on our laptop, which was suprisingly funny. Had an amazing evening/night sun.  Took lots of photos.

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 View from our campsite at the side of the road -this photo was taken at 12.10pm

Wednesday 13th June

Still no improvement to Sharon’s hand, in fact it was getting worse despite taking the antibiotics. It looked like an inflated pink rubber glove covered in blisters, so packed up early (for us) to try and find a doctor/surgeon (!) in Sommaroy. There was no doctor but a helpful lady in a bank who told us there was one in Finnsnes. The ferry to the island of Senja was leaving at 10.30 am,in 40 minutes and the next one after that was at 5.30pm so we rode as fast as we could with full panniers and an estimated distance of 10 miles would we make it?  After 6 miles we arrived at the ferry port with 20 minutes to spare very relieved.

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On board the ferry

We reached Senja and continued to pedal to Finnsnes about 40 miles away only to stop for a coke and a snack to find Tim had lost his tilly hat and was gutted. This is the second hat he’s lost – he only has his cycle helmet left and if he losses that one I think you could call it a hat trick.

On arriving in Finnsnes we arrived at the hospital all of which seem to be at the top of a hill (maybe it’s to find out which ones really need medical attention) The doctor had no idea what the problem was so referred Sharon to a specalist skin doctor in Harstad the next day. Fortunately is was accessable by ferry so Sharon didn’t have to cycle – gripping the handlebar was a problem let alone braking… We then spent the next hour trying to find a spot to pitch our tents.

Thursday 14th June

Tim woke to find Sharon missing from the tent and discovered her outside sleeping because the heat in the tent made it worse. We got up early again to catch the ferry to Harstad, we arrived at the port and boarded the boat. A crew member asked us our names and nationality with a dictaphone. When he asked Tim he asked ‘Harstad’? Tim thought he said ‘hash-tag’ thinking it was some twitter thing forgetting we were heading to Harstad. Bless him.

After a very fast ferry ride to “hash-tag” with lots of nice smelling poeple we arrived. We unloaded our bikes in front of some very impatiant people to head off to the top of  a long steep hill (again) where we would find the hospital.

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We parked the bikes on an open bike park with a big H in the middle and heading inside to find the doctor.

The staff were extremely helpful and concluded it was an allergic reaction to a very toxic plant called Tromso palm and not the moon. The antibiotics were not the right thing for an allergic reaction and so the doctor prescribed steriods for 15 days and a purple liquid to bathe the skin in. Sharon is under strict orders to rest up for a few days. We brought pizza and headed outside ,with no helicopter to produce enough wind for tim to fly his shark kite we headed into town to find a campsite.

Since finding out we have to hang around for a few days, Sara made the decision to continue on to the Lofoten islands on her own as her flight is on Tuesday. We were sad that the 3 musketeers where to be seperated but it was the right decision otherwise Sara would miss out on the stunning islands she had come to see.

We had a slap up meal of meat balls, saute spuds, peas and pepper sauce but the feeling of losing a team member early was felt by all. Sharon had to sleep in the porch with her hand outside to keep it cool as the warmth makes it more painful.  This must of been a strange sight for passers by.  Tim commented that eating lots of meatballs and sleeping in a sleeping bag should carry a health warning…

Friday 15th June

Woke up with heavy rain on the tent it felt like the weather knew Sara was leaving us, Sharon felt sad we weren’t all leaving together. They said goodbye and Tim rode to the bus station with Sara to see her off. Tim said it was horrible saying goodbye.

After Sara had left Tim rode around for a bit feeling lost so went off to look for things to improve life on the road and armed with more chocolate and  a bag full of goodies from the supermarket : ) went back to the campsite to check up on sharon.

We spent the rest of the day on the internet,eating chocolate, drinking tea , chatting to fellow campers and watching the weather go by.

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18 Comments leave one →
  1. Michael Bendix permalink
    June 15, 2012 6:56 pm

    What a fantastic blog, the humour I like, hope your hand sorts itself out sharon, the GPS is interesting to follow. Still in Scotland enjoying the sunshine, Michael B

  2. June 15, 2012 8:08 pm

    poor shaz you need to keep eating chocolates to make it better.What lovely photos we think you are doing so well and on a real adventure on your own now,take care catch up soon love to you both xxxxx

  3. Stu permalink
    June 15, 2012 8:48 pm

    Poor Shaz with the dodgy hand.
    Some Amazing photos guys.
    One request, I really want to see this shark kite you keep mentioning.

    • lambchopeindhoven permalink
      June 17, 2012 10:15 am

      Yes. I have been asking around with all my friends too. Noone has any idea how a kite could be used while cycling as a way of catching the wind to support cycling. Do share!!

      • June 18, 2012 7:31 am

        hi matthew I did get a few funny looks from poeple whle parking the bike onthe helipad.
        regarding our kite it is a mini kit with a shark on it, we had a really strong tail wind going up a long steep hill ,i’ll see if sharon still has a picture, you wouldn’t be able to do it in any other situation but great fun at the time , I still had to peddle though 😦
        good to hear from you t & s

      • June 20, 2012 1:22 pm

        Sounds like fun.. Did you attach it to the handlebars just in front of you, or was it further up in the air? Sounds like fun. Keep up the good work!

  4. Anna permalink
    June 16, 2012 7:56 am

    That dramatic photo of the sun behind grey clouds is beautiful. I have a funny image of a tent with this red-balloon claw hand poking out. Has it got hairs on it too now? Hope it\’s on the mend. And I laughed out loud at the joke from Timmy Three Hats! Take care, and look forward to the next instalment! XX

  5. exiledevertonian permalink
    June 16, 2012 3:48 pm

    Hopefully the steroids will go a long way to stop frightening passers by who see the evil claw poking out of the tent and also get you back to being able to use the brakes on the bike if required. Again, amazing pics of your adventure although, again, I so wish I was sharing the adventure. Did the doctors assure you that the Tromso plant was more harmful than Tim’s meatball & sleeping bag toxic emissions……

    Keep us updated guys, love sitting down to read your blog. Big love…….

  6. Becs permalink
    June 16, 2012 4:10 pm

    Glad to hear the floordrobe is making an international appearance!! 😉 Good luck on your own now Sara has left. Apparently chocolate has amazing healing properties and is particularly good for hands!! hope it gets better soon Sharon 🙂 Loving the pics and the updates, have fun on the new stage of your adventure, love B 🙂

    • June 18, 2012 7:03 pm

      Hi b, good to hear from you. Great news about chocolate’s healing properties. Hope to be off to the Lofoten islands in a couple of days once the chocolate’s kicked in: )

      S and T xxxx

  7. Sara permalink
    June 16, 2012 5:24 pm

    Missing you two , life on the road is not the same without you. Lofoten does not disappoint. Beautiful sunny day too and warm for once. Rest up now this will still be here next week. Had an amazing adventure with you a thousand thanks and see you in denmark for part two. Keep up with the wasa’s and peanut butter. loads of love sara xxx

    • June 18, 2012 7:06 pm

      Missing you too – still eating lots of wasas and keeping up the peanut butter and chocolate spread intake
      : ) Starting to get cabin fever, hoping to head to Lofoten in next couple of days.

      Can’t wait for Denmark, S and T xx

  8. Anne Bendix permalink
    June 17, 2012 10:07 am

    Hi Sharon & Tim, At Fort William & still the weather is being kind to us. One week on from Mike finishing E to E & he’s decided to have an after breakfast nap so I thought I would sort out some photos. Have added the photos you sent of you all cycling from Exeter – thanks for doing that with Mike, gave him a boost. Made me really miss you & feel acutely for Sharon with her hand, really hope it will soon be back to normal & you can continue on you amazing adventure. take care of each other, love, Anne

    • June 18, 2012 7:37 am

      Hi Anne

      Great to hear from you – we enjoyed riding with Mike and sharing a very small part of his adventure. We’ve been following your blog and enjoying it.

      My hand is getting better still lots of blisters but much less painful – hoping to head on in a couple of days. Enjoy Fort William, keep in touch

      Lots of love
      S and T xx

  9. lambchopeindhoven permalink
    June 17, 2012 10:18 am

    Nice bike parking spot. Did you arrive there by air (aided with your kites)?

  10. Rick Steele permalink
    June 17, 2012 8:06 pm

    We’ve started our ride now. Stunning few days. Lots of ferry crossings and beautiful coastal towns. Stops at Stavanger, Haugesund and Leirvik. Ombo Island especially nice. Small pannier of course, so we are making good progress!
    Rick and Sarah (who you met in Tromsø).

    • June 18, 2012 7:23 am

      it’s great you’ve started your trip,we found it hard to keep going because we always want to stop to take pictures, hope you have great weather and great riding ,it was great to hear from you
      tim and shaz

  11. Kathy Gibbs permalink
    June 18, 2012 8:21 pm

    Hope the hand has improved!!! Great pics guys – keep it up. 🙂 Shark kite????

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