34,8km. That’s the distance Elton and I travelled out along the road to Rossouw from Dordrecht, to pick up Kevin. I know this because I measured it precisely so that I could take him back 34,8km to continue his ride back into Dordrecht, where the three of us spent the night in a strange, octagonal house.
We had arrived in Dordrecht at around 4pm on Tuesday, from Joburg. Elton was on crutches, with a moon boot protecting his broken ankle. But he was determined to give Kevin’s bike a total makeover. So it was important to get the bike into town and hitched on a tripod in front of Elton, as soon as possible.
Elton had brought down a comprehensive toolbox, a large box of spare parts and his tripod. We got back to the house at 7.30pm, and Elton set to work, sitting in front of the bike, resting his ankle.
I made supper, we ate, bathed, and went to bed. Elton worked on, finishing his work at 2.15am, replacing all the cabling, fixing loose spokes, oiling everything in sight, and other things I’m sure I’ll never understand.
The alarm went off at 4am. We drove back towards Rossouw. Kevin eased his bike off the rack, pulled his backpack over his shoulders, and swung his leg over the bike, setting off at 6am. Soon a loud “whoop” was heard – he could change gears again! He moved up the hill with speed.
Elton and I drove back to Dordrecht, and tried to catch up our sleep, while waiting for Kevin to cycle back into town. He arrived at 8.35am and left 15 minutes later. We packed the car, and headed back to Joburg. A job well done, thanks to the sweet angel Elton. (says Rory on Twitter: “When God looks after a fellow biker, He sends Elton”)
Wednesday, 7.30pm, back in Joburg: Kevin is 10km from Tarkastad, 175km from where we left him 34,8km outside Dordrecht.
PS: on Tuesday he hit the 2 000km mark. He is in high spirits.