Please bear with us as we adjust to the local time and weather (humid and hot) and gather our energy and focus for the week of Vuelta coverage to come. Your MFS correspondents (Daniel and Klaus) arrived in Madrid, Spain this morning and immediately drove south and west for four hours to the region of Valencia wherein they entered the race and successfully navigated the course and the policía without credentials, which credentials they eventually and easily obtained. Anarcho-crust punk fire-dancing pan-fusion Reggae mullets and walking sticks are in FULL EFFECT. Special thanks to Peter Stetina for the warm welcome on his way back over (again) the climb to the team bus. Also, we’d like to say hello to Lachlan, Joe D and Toms as well as several others we can’t remember now at 1:45 am. This report was filed on an iPhone in the dark because the power (and the AC along with it) in our room went out.
- Klaus talks in his sleep.
- Time waiting in line at an Avis rental car counter in Spain is measured in calendar pages.
- Sizable areas of Spain look surprisingly like landscapes from the movie Time Bandits.
- You guys know that after some mountaintop finishes, to get back to the team busses riders have to ride down the mountain they rode up on? Well at the Vuelta, the ride back included several climbs. Really steep, punchy ones. The riders were clearly bummed out.
- MFS took a vote. We feel that Aqua Blue’s kit is the best-looking design at the race (at least in person).
- There are an astonishing number of Indian restaurants in the greater Alicante metropolitan area. We intend to go to as many of these restaurants as possible, and to review them all for your reading pleasure.
- The first Indian restaurant we visited is called The Gallery Indian Restaurant. It is located in a shopping mall, which itself was located in a highway rest stop.
- Most things around here are in highway rest stops. Our hotel is in a highway rest stop.
- Spain, we don’t hate you or anything. We tell you this because we like you, and we worry about you, but here’s the deal: some of your rural towns are pretty depressing and look like piles or rubble. Even people from war zones wince when they drive by them.
- On the upside, Spain, you put on bike races that are well-organized and easy to get to.
¡Bienvenidos a la Vuelta a España!
We have long been aware of a gap in MFS: we have yet to attend the Vuelta a España.