Pre Ride Friday 8/2


Another warm and windy night. Now without coffee machine I headed out for the morning heartstarter and wandered back via the pre-ride campsite to find many already pitching tents, including Robyn & Trevor. Did 2 trips from the motel shuffling gear down and setting up the tent and by the time I was reassembling the bike Melissa had also arrived. All headed for Seaport for lunch and cider then wandered into town for a coffee. A late afternoon wander up Cataract Gorge left us ready to head for Festivale – the annual food and wine fair which has often been on the same weekend as the ride start or end and for which we got free entry as part of the ride deal.

LOTS of tasty food, wide, cider and beer on offer – a bit cruel really as it was the sort of spread that simply cried out for over-indulgence, but tomorrow was looking like a pretty tough first days ride, so unfortunately had to show some level of restraint. Scallops, calamari, a tasting platter of beef, lamb and sausage and blood orange sorbet washed down by a Clover Hill Sparkling, a rather strange organic cider, a somewhat more standard cider and a quite drinkable sauv blanc. Not too shabby.

Wandered back to camp to be lulled to sleep by the sound of confused lapwings wondering who had invaded their home turf and the clock tower chiming every 15 minutes – I thought they must have turned it off after a while as I didn’t hear it during the night but I’m told it kept going all through the night.

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