It all started a very long time ago, in a land very far away from here. It was Wednesday morning around 11:30am when I was driving to the airport when I received a call from our director Frankie that my flight had been switched and that instead of flying out at 1pm I would be flying out at 7pm. No worries as I live relatively close to the airport and I swung it around. Wish I would have known sooner, but I made good with the time.
So now I had a good amount of time on my hand, and low and behold it was the nicest day of the year, even better then any day I spent in Florida a couple of weeks ago. It was 70's, sunny, and not to windy. What else would a cyclist rather do then ride his bike? But my stuff was all packed. No need to worry though, I have more then enough things to ride with, extra Lake shoes, Rudy Project Helmet, Hincapie cycling clothes, and even Masi bike.
So after my sweet ride I took a shower and spent some last precious moments with the family. Then once again we jumped in the car and headed to the airport. We also picked up Chad who was leaving at a later time.
I had dinner in the airport before leaving on a 4hr+ plane ride at Q'doba for one last dinner. I had a gift card I received from Chad for my birthday and apparently the Q'doba in the airport isn't affiliated with the 'real' Q'doba so I was out of luck, and I was left with $8 less and blank stare of utter confusion.
So I bored the plane heading for LA with the intentions of staying up the whole way and only sleeping on the plane to Taiwan. It was going to be a late night, and I'm normally in bed by 10pm, so this was a daunting task. The only thing that kept me going was the goal of beating Mario Brothers for my Nintendo DS. However I was unsuccessful in my attempt as I stumbled forever in world 8. I hope to concur this on the return trip.
Once in LA it was a short 8min walk to the international terminal where I would bored my plane to Taiwan. By the time we took off it was after 1:30am back home in Indy and I was still up. As the plane started dashing upwards, my head began to rock downwards. The only thing that kept me from completely passing out was the guy next to me rocking in pain because he had to to pee so bad because of the beers he drank. Once he was out and back, I was out, only to be awaken for dinner being served on the plane. Who eats dinner at 3:30? Well I guess when you're flying nothing matters.
So after eating it was back to sleeping. I must have passed out good because I have no idea when they took away my tray and when the tray table went up. I was able to get a solid 10hrs of sleep in which felt nice knowing that the best way to acculate to the time change is sleep at night time. Only problem with this is that when I woke up it was around 3am Taiwan time, meaning it's going to be a long day.
By 3:30am (Taiwan time) it was time for breakfast on the plane. A one egg omelet, with 4 tator tots, a few slices of fruit, and a roll was on the menu. Just enough to get you through the next few hours on the plane. Once I arrived in Taiwan we met up with the rest of the crew. There was some confusing with passport problems, and loss luggage for a couple of the guys, but at least the race organization had someone waiting on us like promised.
So we hopped aboard a bus and headed to the town that will host stage one.
The Peter Bus. The only way to travel
They even turned on a tv for us, and the driver had a little tv he could watch himself. Made for some good driving. Of course once we got on the bus what was the one thing everyone asked for? Starbucks. So we ended making a nice 20min loop around town just so some could get their coffee. It did go well with our boxed lunches of 4 assorted pastries, and by lunch I mean second breakfast as it was only 8am. And really even calling it a meal would be a stretch. But they were showing awesome hospitality.
After a couple of hours of driving we stopped a second time for a break. This time our driver kind of disappeared for a while which led us to have ample time to scope out the scene.
Chad got a vibrating massage.
To bad Rob wasn't here. He could have got some eggs.
His mom packed him about 6 cartons of hard boiled eggs for camp. I'm pretty sure he ate everyone of them.
After the stop we hopped back in the bus and found out we still had another 3hrs to go. Luckily it went by rather fast and we arrived at our first hotel. Once we brought are bags in, we headed for lunch. We were going to eat in the hotel, but they closed at 2pm for lunch and we were a minute late. Once you leave the hotel for food you know you better have an open mind. Well how about an open restaurant on the corner with no walls and a buffet.
Just grab a tray and some chopsticks and have at it. It's kind of like a box of chocolates, you never know what your going to get. All for a reasonable price of around 70-100. ($2-3 US)
Frankie liked it!
Of course there is the always reliable 7 Eleven. Conveniently located every few blocks.
Walking around the streets here is like being in the game Frogger. There's car, but then there are hundreds of scooters zipping around. The best way to get across a street is to not hesitate and keep your head on a swivel.
That's it for now. It's 4pm here and I have to try to stay up another 6hrs. My 5th meal of the day is just around the corner, so that will be nice. Hopefully someone saves me a fish eye. I hear thats a delicatessing around here.