Aug 15th, 2008

Wheel Finished

by Maria
Posted in Croatia

The view of Rabac on the Croation coast from the top of the neighboring mountain is dramatic. Seeing that view as you cycle downhill in a lightening and thunderstorm is even more dramatic. Seeing that view as you cycle downhill in a lightening and thunderstorm with a broken wheel; now that’s an entirely different matter.

What happened? The day started off great. The past couple of days along the coast had been very busy and crowded so we decided to head inland for the day. Hill top towns, farms, sleepy villages and quiet roads; it was lovely. About 20 km away from our intended destination of Rabac, Spiros heard a loud cracking sound from his back wheel. He got off and noticed that the hub had cracked; in other words “wheel finished”. Problem 1: Getting to camp 20km away. Problem 2: Getting a replacement hub or wheel.

As we pondered problem number 1, it started to rain. Then it started to thunder. Then it turned into a deluge. Sigh. Soon it would be dark. Okay, we checked the hub a bit more; 3 out of the 6 spokes on one side had cracked. We figured the wheel may hold out for the remaining 20km…maybe. We would give it a try, maybe someone would come by with a truck big enough for us to hitch a ride. We waited as long as we could for the deluge to subside and then took off.

Luckily, the wheel held out and we made it to the campground in Rabac. Fortunately there was space; unfortunately, they were charging 34 Euros for 2 people and a tent. That’s about $60.00 dollars for a patch of grass, crammed in between a million camper vans and other tents. That’s just plain gouging by any standard but we did not have a whole lot of options at that point.

We found a spot big enough to wedge in our tent and set up. Our lovely neighbors must have taken pity on the two schleps pitching up in the dark and pouring rain, they brought us coffee. Isn’t that really nice? I have to remember what a difference that makes next time I see two schleps pitching up in the rain.

Tomorrow, we deal with problem 2; trying to get a replacement wheel.

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