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120 Kilometer Day

by Tara

As we were eating breakfast this morning (a heartier, double portion of yesterday's delicious sausage and egg feast), Lily informed us that today's weather was supposed to be "crazy". According to the forecast, thunderstorms and record rainfall would be in the cards for us later on. It was tempting to stay another night, but no, it was time to hit the road.

And so we did. Soon after leaving BraČ™ov's city limits, we decided to bike all 140 kilometers to Sibiu today! I'm not sure what prompted this—it was more of a whim than anything, but we agreed to cover nearly two and a half times our normal daily distance in one ride.

Foreboding Romanian Sky

Well fueled from a giant breakfast, and pushed along a slight downgrade by a nice tailwind, the long ride (for us) was actually quite easy. Regularly cruising at speeds near 30/kph, we covered distance swiftly and greatly enjoyed ourselves. The foreboding clouds overhead provided a nice riding temperature, and though it looked as if it would rain any second for our entire ride, it never did.

At the forty kilometer mark, it was time for a quick roadside lunch. We hurriedly ate some sandwiches, eager to get moving again. We were on a roll! At seventy, half a chocolate bar kept us cruising. At one hundred, we were both starting to get tired, so we bought three ice cream bars apiece to fuel our legs.

Foreboding Romanian Sky

For me, the rest of the ride was more difficult, like a strenuous workout instead of a fun one. When we were about twenty five kilometers from Sibiu, I found myself wanting to push on, but was beginning to lose my rationality. When I am tired or upset, I am much more prone to getting hurt. So, with my last shred of good sense, I tapped out, recognizing that to continue would be dangerous. With the road rising into hills and traffic picking up as we approached the city, I wasn't in the best shape to handle it.

Where once Tyler might've tried to push us on, the more experienced and wiser version agreed and encouraged the stop without so much as batting an eye. We rolled our bikes off the highway and into a field. While Tyler made our home for the night, I collapsed onto a Walkstool, leaned my head against a clothing-filled pannier, and fell asleep.

The rain we were promised never came during our ride, but once darkness fell, it began falling in sheets, blown in by strong gusts of wind. Safe and perfectly dry, even in a storm, we talked about how thankful we were to have such a great tent to come home to. After a simple pasta dinner and several episodes of Star Trek, we fell fast, fast asleep.

Good. Night.