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Stranded on a Desert Island

by Tyler

We just found out our wheels have been sitting in New Jersey for the last twelve days. Nice work US Postal Service. We've now been on Kerkannah for more than two weeks. The first week was very enjoyable; we did lots of sightseeing, and I had a sizable backlog of programming that needed to be done (and was). Tara spent our down time working on her novel, cooking projects, and our journal. The second week has worn us down quite a bit.

Until today, there was no tracking information of any kind on the USPS website. Since Velocity shipped our wheels, we've been in limbo waiting for some cue, some anything that might indicate how much longer our wait would be. Our moods have been hit and miss for the last few days. We want to get back on the road.

Now that we know our wheels have not even reached Tunisia, we're ready to make a decision.

Options We Are Considering

  1. Continue waiting on Kerkennah for our wheels to arrive.

    • PROS: Our wheels could arrrive in a day or two. This saga would be over and we wouldn't have to return to the island.

    • CONS: Our wheels might not arrive for a week or more. Each day we regret more and more not leaving. Each day we feel more like we need to "stay the course" to ensure all of our waiting hasn't been in vain. This is more or less the situation we've been in for the last week because we had no information on the whereabouts of our wheels. It sucks.

  2. Leave Kerkannah by bike for a loop through Douz and Matmata. Return to Kerkennah to pick up our wheels.

    • PROS: We are back on the road riding our bikes. This is ultimately what we both want to be doing.

    • CONS: Tara's rear wheel, in my estimation, has gotten a little worse after riding unloaded on the island. If we do this, we could wind up with an unridable wheel during our loop. This would probably make me go insane. The loop would also take roughly three weeks. All of this waiting has really soured our attitude towards spending more time in Tunisia.

  3. Leave on foot carrying what we need in our backpacks. Do the same loop from #2.

    • PROS: We don't have to worry about wheel failures and we complete our loop of the southern half of Tunisia much more expediently.

    • CONS: We have to find somewhere safe to store our bikes. Our backpacks are very small, we wouldn't bring our camping gear which means in addition to transport costs, we would be staying in hotels.

None of these options seems particularly appealing. I am now fighting with nagging thoughts that we should have carried on with any wheel we could find. Velocity could have sent our new wheels to La Marsa for us to pick up when we leave Tunisia. We probably would have made it just fine with a throwaway for a few weeks. I know there is no sense in laboring over what could have been done but I'm finding these thoughts hard to ignore.

Even though we are more or less 'killing time' with our tour of Tunisia (waiting out at least part of winter), I want to be seeing the country on our bicycles. All of this said, right now we want nothing more than to be at home with family enjoying the holidays, thousands of miles away from this mess.

Previous Entry
Patience & Aioli
In Years Past and Future
2010 - Slowing Down


Sorry to hear about the delays. If I were you I'd be itching to ride on.Be glad you're not in Europe being blizzarded on. Happy Holidays to you!
Posted by Mark on December 22nd, 2009 at 9:31 AM
Soon to be blizzarding here in Minnesota as well. Sadly, it's going to affect holiday plans for lots of folks. It's the big one!

Thinking of you both.
Posted by Mary Niedenfuer on December 22nd, 2009 at 10:36 AM
Yeah, it sucks to be "stuck" but there are a lot worse places to be than a desert island! We are getting ready to have at least a foot of snow dumped on us in the next 48 hours. Enjoy the sun!
Posted by Amanda on December 22nd, 2009 at 1:57 PM
Thanks for all the kind words and encouragement! We're feeling much better now; it was helpful, as always, to get things down on "paper"

We chose option #3. Tomorrow we head towards Tozeur!
Posted by Tyler on December 22nd, 2009 at 2:01 PM
Have a safe trip. It is to snow, ice etc. for Christmas, so be glad you are in the sun. Keep well. Love you both GM & GP
Posted by Anonymous on December 22nd, 2009 at 10:14 PM
I hope your wheels arrive soon. It stinks to be stuck somewhere when you'd rather be riding. Have a wonderful Christmas and a happy 2010 :) Friedel & Andrew
Posted by Friedel on December 24th, 2009 at 6:13 AM
Hi Tara & Tyler, We wish you (and all the readers and writers here on this blog) a Merry X-Mas and a Happy New Year! There are more important things in life then wheels. Enjoy your trip and the nice weather. Hugs, Yves & Ingrid
Posted by yvesthebiker on December 24th, 2009 at 2:32 PM
Happy X mas and New YEars!! Love you both!
Posted by lian on December 24th, 2009 at 8:42 PM
Thank you for all the support, everyone!! Yves & Ingrid, you are so right. There are much more important things than wheels. Namely love and health and a MERRY CHRISTMAS to you all!

Happy holidays!
Posted by Tara on December 25th, 2009 at 1:56 AM