Second week in Bariloche. The big news is that my bike is back from the shop including a fixed frame.
However, let me start back at the beginning…
Last weekend I brought my bike into a local shop for a basic service. Check for worn parts like the chain and brake pads, replace what was necessary and check and adjust everything else as necessary. I returned on Monday but the bike wasn’t ready yet. When I went to pick up the bike on Tuesday, I had a surprise. The proprietor showed me a crack in the right chainstay. Can it be fixed? He said yes and told me to pick my bike up at end of the week.
This afternoon I retrieved my bike. The photo above gives an idea of the location of the crack. Notice the asymmetry of the extra weld in the bottom of the photo.
Here is a photo from the inside.
Needless to say, it was a surprise that introduces a little a wild card. Looking at it now, the extra weld looks fine, and I expect it to last the rest of the trip, particularly since after Puerto Montt, I’ll have less weight because my gear will be carried on the truck. However, I’ll do some test riding around Bariloche this next week since if absolutely necessary, I still have a small window I could go back to Austin and retrieve my other mountain bike (the one that I cycled through Africa).
Other than bike shop fun, this week was fairly routine at the Spanish school.
The school lets people start most any Monday and we are divided into groups based on ability. These past two weeks, myself and another student have formed a group together, so this means a fair amount of individual attention. We had an assessment exam yesterday and as I reviewed material, seems like we’ve compressed a one-semester beginning Spanish class into two weeks of four hour daily lessons. I had seen most of the material before but forgotten some and taking it more intensely definitely helps. It also helps to speak Spanish with my host family. All in all, it has been both a good grammar review and speaking/listening experience even if I grumble sometimes about the past tense conjugations…
Three afternoons this week we’ve had activities with most of the students. On Monday the weather was so-so and we played Monopoly in Spanish. Wednesday was a trip to the local museum and Friday was a picnic in the park. Thursday we had an extra class session that made up for the holiday last week.
The museum explained more about the area including this display of about the winds and others about flora, fauna and history of this area.
This week was my partner student’s last week, so next week my lessons will turn into private sessions. A little shorter than this week, but at least as intense. After that, I’ll have two weeks to cycle to Puerto Montt for the start of the last phase, the ride with TDA to Ushuaia.