Day 43 – Lietza to Bilboa (via San Sebastián and Orio)(Pais Vasco)

The sky was covered in a carpet of grey clouds. The typically English weather brought a smile to my face as it meant I wouldn’t be baking hot and it was a reminder of home. On my bike I had a 200 meter climb to deal with for a warm up. It wasn’t so bad as the wind was aiding me a little bit.

After that hill was out the way. I cashed in all my altitude meters in the bank during a 50 mile and 3 hour bike ride to San Sebastián, which was on the northern coast of Spain and at 1 point I flirted with the French boarder. It was a dream of a morning bike ride and gave me my 1st glimpse of the Atlantic as a reward.

When I was on my exit from San Sebastián, some nazi Spanish police officer waved me to the side of the road and tried to tell me he should give me a penalty fine for cycling with headphones in. He obviously was just having a quiet morning and mustn’t have had much to do, as he pretty much let me go straight away, and when I pointed out that I was only listening to directions, his officer buddy started laughing. I’m sure he felt like a dick. I wish I could have taken a photo of their faces. Such a contrast between the guy suppressing a big laugh and serious Dan aka officer fuck face, who was obviously hurting a bit.

So anyways. Further along the road I went (with my headphones still in – pure bad ass I know). I stayed on the coast for a while, riding next to the Atlantic where the waves would crash against the rocks, forcing the water to shoot up into the air, far about the road and giving me the occasional spraying. I cut in land and found a town called Orio, which had a river running through it, with hundreds of people lining the banks, and a healthy portion of them jumping in for a swim from their boats or off bridges. By now the weather was more fitting for where I was in the world and it was time for a river swim/bath.

I felt good when I sat back on the bike and decided that I was doing 200kms today. It would take me all the way to Bilboa. I only really felt uncomfortable in the last 20kms or so. I wanted so bad to climb off and call it a day, but I stuck my man, Michael Jackson’s – Off the wall album on, and disco boogied my way into town.

By the time I did eventually climb off, it had gone midnight and I was aching.

“We have a saying in Korea town. It goes ‘kiss my yellow ass, copper”

-Chang

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