Europe 2009: Mile 1788

21st April 2009

A frustrating and knackering day in many respects. Firstly because we couldn’t find the Honda dealer since it was stuck away at the back of a shopping centre. When we did eventually arrive we found that they hadn’t  ordered the screen! I managed (just) not to say anything. eventually they phoned another dealer in Bielsko-Biala have ordered the screen and have it on the 23rd when we go through the town :(. By the time we got away from the dealership it was just before noon and we had a very long way to travel. We headed off on road 11 towards Katowice which was near our ultimate destination but the GPS had other ideas and indicated at Jarocin that we headed off on road 15 towards Wrocław. Foolishly I took its advice. I think I need to rethink how to navigate using the GPS as the current method isn’t working.

Anyway road 15 was much narrower than road 11 and seems to go through more towns and cities. In places it was quite a nice road and there is a wonderful stretch through a forest. Very nice but in the main it is the same type of worn out rutted road as we have seen in the rest of Poland. We stopped for a bit eto eat in a restaurant attached to a petrol station – as I have said before this seems like a very good idea to me!

Eventually we came to Wrocław – Unfortunately we seemed to hit it at rush hour – Ouch!! It took about an hour to get through – Terrible. At one stage we were riding between a set of tram lines – scary and not something you want your front wheel to get stuck in! When we managed to get through it was only a shortish ride to the motorway which took us all the way to Katowice (a ride of about 100 miles). For Isabel sans screen it was very very difficult but she persevered – Good on her!

We eventually got to Katowice just after 7pm and searched the GPS for the nearest hotel (at least it was useful for something today). This was the Senator Hotel which we found and booked in (luckily they had a room). Thi swas a nice clean hotel thankfully and is awarded

Three sarges

After taking all of our luggage to the 3rd floor (thankfully they had a lift – admittedly without an internal door which was interesting!) we changed and went in search of sustenance. Eventually we found a small restaurant in the middle of town which was busy (always, I think, a good sign). I had Borscht with Pierogi (dumplings filled with meat) followed by Silesian Roulade (meat in pastry – noticing the trend yet?) and Isabel had Pierogi. Again very nice. This was followed by a walk back to the hotel.   We moved the bikes to a less obvious location on the recommendation of the hotel receptionist. Then bed, exhausted.

Lessons Learnt:

  • Don’t follow the GPS slavishly – it pays to have some idea of where you want to go and think for yourself!
  • The best laid plans of mice and men go oft astray
  • Motorways are sometimes useful ways of riding long distances quickly
  • A restaurant busy with local custom is usually a good place to eat

Adrian & Isabel

& Mr Teddy

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