Countdown to Paradise

It is now just under 30 days until I depart for Paradise, aka Hawaii, with a follow on bicycle trip to the Land of Smiles, aka Thailand, before returning for a weekend in Honolulu. It feels as if I have too little time to fully prepare. Preparation for the trip(s) actually started on July 11th when we returned from a three week trip to England and Italy. I have been getting ready almost every day since our return.

If some four months of preparation seems excessive, let me explain that I need to be ready to cycle an average of 62 miles a day for a total of some 500 miles over 8 days. I have been on the roads getting ready for the trip and making sure that I can easily average a metric century a day for 8 days. Unfortunately, I tend to be a little obsessive compulsive. In the words of John Mellencamp, “I ain’t never satisfied. I do it once then I do it to death.”  In this case I did it until my right shoulder locked up and refused to move. Two weeks of intensive physical therapy, two weeks off my bicycle, and now I am back at it in a more restrained fashion. With continuing therapy sessions and another 700 miles in my legs over the next 4 weeks, I will arrive in Bangkok ready for the ride to Phuket.

First, I have a four day stop in Honolulu to visit my younger daughter. It will be my first time in Hawaii. As you might guess I am excited. Parents be kind to your children because you never know when you may want a free room in Paradise.

One of the laws of packing for a bicycle trip is never allow anything to leave your sight if its disappearance could be fatal to your trip. A bicycle will not fit into the overhead bin which is why I rent high-end road bikes when I travel. I neither want TSA or airline employees handling my bike nor do I want it to be lost.

For this trip, I am fitting the following into one carryon bag:

  1. Shoes and pedals
  2. Helmet and sunglasses
  3. Gloves and two complete cycling kits
  4. Saddle
  5. Two days of clothing
  6. Backpack

You will immediately notice I have no chamois cream, sunblock, or other essential creams, gels and liquids on the list.  I will buy those in Honolulu allowing me to avoid Delta’s checked bag fee. These can be left in Honolulu on the return trip and used on future visits. When I depart for Bangkok, I will put items 1-4 into the backpack so I have those items in sight at all times. The remaining items can be checked. Korean Airlines does not have a checked bag fee. Delta could take a lesson.

I will write more and post photos once I arrive. Now, I am going to do those PT stretches and exercises again. If I do them twice a day instead of once then perhaps I will heal twice as fast.

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