NZ Challenge 2014 - North Island
Rotorua to Thames
After three days of brilliant sunshine today started damp and overcast and a light rain. What Richard called a scotch mist. We turned to the west and started a long climb. As we climbed the rain would come and go. As we climbed higher we rode in to cloud cover. Visibility was low and the support vehicles had trouble seeing the riders. But as weather changes on a whim, so did ours. The mist gave way and we rode through a woodland area emerging at the Glen Roadhouse. This was our designated coffee stop. The whole ride met here. Team 27 arrived at the same time as the ground crew and were soon followed by Team 20. The warmth of the coffee shop soon gave way to the call of the road.
Today has been an arduous day. It was not hills we had to contend with. It was cold and wet. rough surfaces, headwinds and heavy traffic. It was also a long days ride. Over 160kms. Many tired bodies. You can see in the photographs (see Facebook) the faces of spent people. However, rest, good food and a good team spirit will see our riders back in the saddle and ready for another long day of riding. Why put up all this effort? It is a challenge. Challenging events for changing lives. The hard work our riders put in for these several days all count towards a life time of relief for the children in Zambia. Today Ba Lackson talked about children graduating from the Eagles Wings school for the first time. As these children will seek work or higher education, more children will be taken from the streets to take their place in the school, in grade one. the efforts of the riders and the funds raised will see these children reach their god given potential.
Our accommodation is a loverly rural setting, away from the main road, surrounded by lush green hills. A river in the valley that the cyclist cooled down in after their long ride. The sacrifice is the lack of phone signal and hence no internet. Dear readers, please excuse the lateness of this blog. You are reading it half a day late when we take a rest break and also have internet. The silver lining in this situation is not just the idyllic outlook, but seeing Reid standing on the very top of a child’s climbing frame to get a couple of bars of signal to phone home.