15 Mar 2008

The Argus Cycle Tour 2008

I just have to call it a tour, because once you arrive in Cape Town you have to tour around to see everything and go everywhere. Here then follows a little bit of what we got up to while down under.
Of course Cape Town was steaming, so we were looking at all sorts of watering holes to keep us cool, starting off with a picnic at Spier. Next time you travel that far, do yourself a favour and visit Spier. Beautiful picnic spots and the shop selling all the delicatessen and most devourable edibles are just super stunning. So much to choose from and so small a stomach-of course we changed that very quickly into a big stomach.

Back into Cape Town we went off to register and worked our way through the expo, making sure not to miss any of the many true bargains, like cycling gloves for R20! Howz that! Bought two pairs! Also got myself the teddy bear with the biggest smile ever wearing a Argus t-shirt, who became my newest mascot for the Argus ride.
Once we had our race numbers, we went off to Green Point to collect our bikes. Honestly, we had to marvel at the cool and collected way JH Retief handled the off loading of the bikes. We rented a Corsa Lite in Cape Town and were doubting the little car's ability to load two road bikes in the boot at the same time. Surprise! Surprise! No problem at all. It was of course a total different story when we had to pick up Andre and his bike and of course the two of us. Three passengers and a bike! Again, no problem! Corsa Lite did it again! (hopefully the Opel Managers are reading this and will offer me a new Corsa Lite for all the free advertising!)

Once Andre was sorted, we went in search of the watering holes. We needed that. The heat in Cape Town was not what we expected. We were used to having cool breezes coming from the sea, but not this year. We were dreading the heat on Sunday's ride but tried not to voice our concerns.
Most of the restaurants in Cape Town made sure that they made the most of the influx of Gautengers and take their money in change for beers, cold wines and other cooling down drinks combining it with carboloading meals etc. This menu was displayed at the very well-known Foresters Arms drinking hole in Rondebosch, near the University. It was absolutely packed with students and lecturers and ........ no didn't see any cyclists ........ but very interesting pub with an arm long history........Since 1880!
At last the big day dawned, no wind! Unbelievable! Needless to say, most of us did our personal bests. I was over the moon and was sure my mascot attached to my bike helped with the pedalling. The big bet of Corne beating me by 20 min was always in the back of my mind. But at the end he did manage to beat me by 5 min. Well done Corne! The best thing about this is that Corne previously sort of trained for the Argus with a ride here and there, spinning once a week. This year he put in a little bit of effort and came up with hugely new result. And so can you when you put your mind to it. I have to mention Susan as a first Argus rider. We were all inspired by your face at the end. It said it all: " It was fantastic". Well done to you!
And so the Argus came to an end, and with the ride behind us we could go out the next day and just relax and enjoy the beautiful scenery.We spent the day driving the Argus route from Muizenberg to Simon's Town where we stopped for breakfast, watching the manoeuvres of the frigates and other military boats.
From there we made our way to Cape Point. What a beautiful site! I have to mention though, that on the way there, we encountered baboons trying to scratch off the tar our dropped Bar Ones from the previous day's race (which was by now squashed into a very thin Bar One!) as well as the Goo, Active-Gel, Vooma, gel sachets dropped by cyclists on their ride. The baboons caused a major traffic jam as they didn't want to let go of their new food source! So please next time, make sure that your used sachet does in fact reached your back pocket and not the road.

We did encounter another kind of baboon at Cape Point itself. Stealing handbags, not afraid of people, eating anything and everything. King of the cars, people and the beach.

Be there next year! It is just so much fun. How can you miss it ........again?!

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