Hitching a Ride / 01.12.12

On our way to visit our friend Adam in Fethiye, we stopped at a yacht town called Gocek. Our hotel owner told us the rest of the journey would be more or less flat. “It is thirty more kilometers, and mostly flat,” he said. Well, by now we should know not to trust drivers for elevation stats, but nonetheless we set our expectations to FLAT TERRAIN. The first long climb felt twice as hard as usual, and we convinced ourselves that that was it and it would be flat from here on out. As we approached the second large climb Kallie began moaning and I was trying my best to get our heads in the game. Hills are significant on a bicycle–especially a tandem with a loaded trailer, and our legs were tired. “Get your head in the game!” I said to Kallie, unhelpfully. (Biking teaches you some good and bad communication techniques for marriage).

We down-shifted and dug in for a steep, two mile climb. Just then, a large truck stacked high with crates passed us and squeeked to halt–in the middle of the road. On went his flashers.
“What is the meaning of this?” I asked myself. (A question I find I ask more and more frequently these days). Out loud to Kallie I said, “What on earth?! Now what?” As we pulled up next to the truck and began to pass it on the right side, the truck shifted into a low climbing gear and began moving with us.
“Are we getting a ride?” I asked.
“Let’s do it!” said Kal.
We maneuvered over close to the truck and with one hand each we grabbed on. The pedaling was much easier–kind of like a little kid who’s getting a push by her mom but still pumps her little legs on the pedals. The steering at first took a bit of getting used to, but finally we settled in for the climb, and the truck continued at that perfect pace all the way up the hill, towing us along. Near the top we let go with a thumbs-up and a wave, and the driver shifted to a higher gear and was off.

We stopped for a picture and Kallie came around front to grab the camera. She was grinning from ear to ear. “I’m the world’s happiest girl!” she said.
“Yeah, I know you are,” I laughed. “That was probably one of the nicest gifts anyone could give us.”

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  1. Anders Spidahl said on December 2, 2012 at 8:02 pm

    I love your new posts. I am sitting listening to Portuguese music and reading them on a sunny sunday morning, dreaming of travel. I got the chills reading the post about the truck driver towing you up the hill. I love reading about all the random acts of kindness you are encountering.

  2. Michael Scott and Lorna Cooper said on December 14, 2012 at 5:10 am

    Random acts of kindness are a confirmation of the presence of God. Lorna and I are following your journey and seeing the world through your eyes. Thank you. We are thinking of you and praying for you. Have fun!

    • ajspidahl said on December 14, 2012 at 9:05 am

      Thanks Michael and Lorna, for holding us. It’s a beautiful world. P.S. Kallie said as she was sitting at an open air restaurant last night by the sea, a barn owl flew right past at eye level, heart-shaped face and all…

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