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suspicious looking bag on the floor. Much to my surprise, the bag started
moving, and an un-washed, sun-weathered head appeared! This head belonged
to Mike Henley, another rider in the race. I didn’t recognise him and apologised
for disturbing him. He began to tell me about a crazy cycle race he was
involved in, and it all sounded a little too familiar. ;) Once we realised we were
both in the TAW16, we stayed up chatting for another hour about our
experiences so far. Mike couldn’t get his head around how little mileage he
and other riders were doing each day. He wasn’t used to the conditions and,
like all of us, found it challenging. For me the challenge continued throughout
the night as it turned out that Mike snores at noise pollution levels. I hope
his wife Vicki has plenty of good ear plugs!

Mike’s alarm went off at 5am, 6am and 7am the next morning. He had decided
to finish the course early and head off to Blarney that day. I had my sights
on conquering the Ring of Kerry! It was foggy and rained heavily until noon.
As a result, the views didn’t impress me.

On one of the busier roads on the Ring of Kerry, my phone dropped out of my
bag and was immediately run over by a car. The screen was shattered and
it no longer turned on. I carried on cycling, trying to make up my mind about
whether to contact anyone. I became worried about people becoming worried
if they wouldn’t hear from me. This really stressed me out. I couldn’t stop
crying - I wanted to focus on my cycling and the race and didn’t want the
faff of the phone or who to contact. It was getting late and nothing seemed
to be open anymore. I stopped at a phone box, but it only took 2 coins, which
I didn’t have. I went to the pub in the nearest town to see if I could put my
SIM card in a phone and make a call. Turns out, with smart phones, it’s not
as easy as that anymore! I only had Adrian’s phone number, via my Brevit
card, so I called him from the pub. Shout out to Christina and everyone at
The Village Inn in Beara for helping me! :) When I got through to Adrian, he
told me that it was good that I was crying. It meant I was in the ‘race zone’,
and cared about my performance in the race. Adrian was ace and said he
would alert race HQ and this would allow me to get back on the bike, and back

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