Cycling the Atlantic coast of Europe from north to south during the summer of 2017. View the archive, the route so far, or donate to MSF.

Why does it always rain on me?

By Stuart Lowe on

It rained all through the night. I put my tent away in a brief pause but everything was still soaked. I headed to Ulsteinvik to see about a wheel. Biltema didn't have any, G Sport didn't have one. Intersport didn't have any in stock but could order one by Wednesday. I can't afford the delay. Then the Intersport man suggested he could take a wheel off one of their display bikes. It was a disc brake wheel so might not be strong enough for v-brakes but it would get me going. It cost 600 krones but I don't think he charged me for the work.

landscape
Cracked rim

With a new, but, uncertain, wheel, I went food shopping. I broke out my UK bank card and spent £36 on food. Much of which was the cheapest you could get. I ate half of it. My mood was really low. I'd overspent dramatically in Norway. It all takes away from my future. I was nearly of the intention of calling it a day once I got to Bergen.

I set out again into the cold rain. I headed over surprise hills in the rain. It was getting colder. My hands, in my neoprene gloves, we're getting seriously wrinkly. I could see my breath. I had to take a ferry but the ticket seller missed me. I like to think it was deliberate to let me off given how miserable it was.

More hills and more fjords in chilling rain. Little roadside streams were raging torrents.

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torrent

I eventually gave up in Åheim where I saw a sign for camping. The young people running the Jetsund Camping were kind enough to let me use the shower (they provided a free towel to use) and to use the washing machine and dryer for free. I washed all my clothes for the first time. Hooray. Being able to get things dry helped lift my spirits. I chatted to some friendly Norwegians. They cheered me up too.

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Friendly Norwegians