Blog 23-Downward Spiral

I am living in blogging hell, the vehichle that propels me towards hell at warp speed is the WordPress app. This post was written to describe the descent off the backside of Trans Fagaras, since it felt like we were spiraling down the mountain. Instead we find our writing/photograhy and blogging efforts swirling down the toilet bowl. Thanks WordPress, ya really knock it out’a the park with this blogging platform. The entire post that was up here this am is gone, very sorry but I dont have a copy and I ain’t screwing around with retelling the whole thing. I will post the images once again and then webe done.

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The Roof of Curtea D'Arges Monastery

The Roof of Curtea D’Arges Monastery

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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About Jeremiah Watt-saddlemaker

Jeremiah is a saddle maker, a silversmith. He runs a small company manufacturing bits and spurs as well as the manufacture of saddle hardware. An avid cyclist, especially the loaded solo tour type cycling.
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5 Responses to Blog 23-Downward Spiral

  1. Hey doug, now i understand the doctorscomment that colleen wudel made. Ye, you have here a copy of my missing blog post, and thanks much for that. My boy has told me he would get it reposted next weekend for me. Thanks again doug and be blessed

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  2. Hello to the wudels, pray that all are well. Not sure i understand the doctors comment?? Glad your along forcompany.

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  3. doctors2014 says:

    Hi,
    It’s Colleen Wudel Again, I don’t know how we turned into “doctors2014”

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  4. doctors2014 says:

    Blog 23- Downward Spiral
    The following is the original text from this blog – Downward Spiral
    ( I know Jeremiah, you love me)

    Okay its confession time. Who ever wrote those blogs describing the north face of Trans Fagaras as being the more difficult……phooey,……not even sure they rode a bike on the road. IMO, the south side of Trans Fagaras is a beast, 30 plus miles of steady climb and way stiffer pitches than the north side for sure. Once Pine and myself descended thru the long black tunnel, it was a constant downward spiral for us, steep grades, hairpins, heavy fog, misty rain, and racing Porches made for quite an exciting roadway for sure. Confession; I am not at all convinced I would have made it up the southerly side

    This is the most pituresque piece of Romania so far, what a stunning piece of work God came up with when making this part of the world. Not to be missed if ever you get over this way. For me it would be this area and then on over to Peles and up into the Carpathians. It is pure postcard country. Much wilder feeling than places in USA. I have been thinking about that “wilder” feeling, and it happens in several ways i think. Driving over here keeps you on your toes, they do not remove every obstacle that could hurt you badly. For instance, very few of the hair pins have a guard rail, you can literally look of of 1000 plus foot cliffs to the next road below. Trees, huge ones are inches from the edge of the pavement. Road workers, loggers, they go about thier business and everyone is fine with it. There are no flagmen, no orange warning signs, no cautions, no flashing lights….poof, you come around a corner and they are rignt there….big and in your grill. We watched a logger with a drag trailer, jack knife his rig across the road so he could get turned around to head up a super steep pitch for a load of logs. He was being helped by….yes, a passing motorist. No yelling and horn honking, no finger gestures. So, my conclusion is, that we remove so many obstacles from the drivers physicue that they are just robots on autopilot with no reason to think and engage. I find the roads especially different, with the trees right up to the white line in places it is very tight and you feel like you are part of the forest. We in USA, knock down every tree within 60 or so feet of centerline….just so you cant get hurt. This also opens everything up more and you loose some charm. Our view pull offs are huge and paved, and guard railed….mega pull offs. Here, its barely a wide spot, always gravel, and seldom a guard rail. Guess thats how they get rid of idiot drivers, we should pay heed.

    We rode the ashphalt serpent all the way to the bottom and enjoyed every twist and turn with immense pleasure. Down at the bottom, there is a huge dam that holds back a beautiful multi-fingered lake. All very picturesque. Long ways back down the road, while visiting some now forgotten Monestary. We were told that at the southern base of the Trans, is the most stunning Monestary they had seen. So, Pine and myself took the afternoon to take in the Curtea de Arges Monestary as well as sit in the park so all our gear could dry. This makes the fifth event inwhich we got thouroughly drenched with evening showers and gear needed drying. Theres a certain odor developing in tents and sleeping bags……doesnt seem like air freshners are quite enough anymore. Oh yeah, back to Curtea. It is without doubt, spectacular. Simply amazing. The outside is oppulent, the masonry work, and carved plaster work are beyond description. The inside is rich with paintings, floor to gold domed cieling. The walls have a ton of gold leaf work on them, as does all 5 domes that make up the roof.

    We are just east of a tiny village, Domnesti and are headed generally toward Bucharest where Pine will board. Plane and leave me to my own on this trip. More on that later. The tents are up and supper was ate. We picked a huge pot full of wild blackberries, as well as some plums of an already picked plum tree. Both of us had trouble sleeping last night, so we are holding back getting into the sack hoping we just passout when we do so. 2 wagons, empty of thier hay and being raced home at a long trot by many Gypsie teenagers, they spotted our campsight that we thought was hidden well. They just finished jumping off thier wagons and came over insisting that we feed them. Apparantley its pretty common within Gypsie culture to be fed when you insist on it…..I told them I was a haggis eating, kilt wearing Scotsman………and we dont feed on demand…..that,s got to be a Democrat they be thinkin of. No sooner did they leave than we heard this gruff voice and whT sounded like an avalanche……we aint in any hills that could produce an avalanche. Pine and I, are peering around, we cant see squat. Cant see whos producing the gruff sounding voice,nor the cause of the avalanche sound. Finally, thru a gap inthe trees, we see hundreds of sheep coming down thru trees on a gravel hillside across the road from us. There must be 200 plus sheep, and theyre following thier shepard, he has a Freddie Kruegeresque voice. It could only be soothing if your ears are full of wool. As soon as they break free of the trees, they head at a lope for the sound of his calling. I can see him now, pretty much all black, with 2 of the biggest dogs I have ever seen…..bigger than Mongvolian horses.

    Its rolling wooded hills that we find ourselves passing thru. We can hear men logging. We can hear men working and talking, as they are putting up thier conical stacks of hay. we can see and hear men shouting at those darned sheep. There are the sounds of shod horses feet clip-clopping along ashphalt. There are birds in the field, in the orchards, and over head, all singing that abundant harvest song. We roll over ridge after ridge on 8-10 percent grades. We are riding now in an across the mountains direction, meaning that all the ridges that come off the Transylvanian Alps headed south, we are crossing each of those in sucession. Headed for the capital, Bucharest.

    Midnight, and the ominous clouds we seen at bed time roll into full thunderstorm mode, ripping at nylon….that goodness I had taken mine off. The rain pelted the ground so hard it jumped 6 inches off the ground after it hit. We were both tucked in, and felt like 7 days of getting rained on was about enough. It causes us to stop for an hour or more the next day, spread things out to dry enough for yet another night. On thisnight, I had my tablet inside withme and was dutifully working on the blog. Worked for a time and de ided it was about time to hit the sack as smelly as it is. Set my tablet against the wall of the tent and promptly fell asleep. We have been rained on enough now that we really dont even register it mentally. Woke up in the morning, looked around, yup the tent came tbru it pretty well with rain in 2 corners……..but, OOPS, the tablet had fell over face first on the floor of the tent. The ground not being real level had set the tablet on a pretty good angle, so the bottom third was in 1/2 inch of water. THATS NOT GOOD JIMBO. I picked it up and shook the crap out of it…..something I had read on a tech type blog…….and slid it into my pannier knowing that it would need some additional shaking later to work properly. Tablets are like a wife, in that they need a good shaking to work to thier full potential. the next town we rode thru we spotted a beauty salon, the lady was nice enough to allow me to use her hair dryer…..so, I didnt have to shake her because her husband must have done it recently. We spent sometime warming it up, trying to dry it outenough to dare fire it up. About 4 episodes of hot air and we had done all we could. Pressed the magic button, and she fired right up…..sureglad I read about that shaking trick.

    Oh my goodness, but there are so many ridges to climb over onthis tiny route we have chosen. We are on very oldroad, mostly wide single lane type stuff. And we are doing plenty of 10 -15 percent climbs for 3 or 4 mile length. we even had a climb that went past 5 miles in length today. Legs are burnt out, no power left so we have stopped for the night just as it started to rain once again. We are both at a rather odd place with regard to diet or eating. By supper we no longer have any appetite, so quite often we just have tea and call it good. We know it aint right, we know we are nowburning an excess ofcLories and we are deficient, but we just cant get the ol brain to tell the stomach that it needs to eat. And NO, to answer your question, we are loading up on pure junk thru the day, we aren’t even averaging one meal a day in town yet and we have been meaning to.

    A quick little rundown on photography. First off, when we began my boy couldn,t give a crap about taking pictures. That has changed alot over the last month and a half. Matter of fact quite a few pics withineach blog are from his GoPro camera or phone. As for JW who is a maybe a little to the other extreme, I have taken an average of 47 pics per day and our biggest single day is 196 during the day. That means alot of stops thru the day which can sure play havoc with your climbing tempo or your high gear cadence on the flats. But at least we got the pic. I have lived up to my promise to actually meet and talk to 2 interesting looking folks each day.

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  5. doctors2014 says:

    Hi Jeremiah,
    We actually have a copy of this “disappeared” blog, it was a great one! We’ll at least download a hard copy, and maybe we can figure something out so that people can read it somewhere. It brings us great joy to hear you sharing your faith.
    We are really enjoying your trip.
    God bless,
    Don & Colleen

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