Cycling Europe Day 19: El-Awady Galactica

Every day it’s pretty much same ol’ same ol’. There’s hardly any point telling the story

It was an especially beautiful morning in the galaxy today.

It was an especially beautiful morning in the galaxy today.

anymore. It’s getting old.

Captain Nadia El-Awady, now the elder of the El-Awady clan after their father passed away (ألف رحمة ونور عليه) and thus the captain, quickly downs her breakfast before she begins her work for the day. She takes her seat at the helm of El-Awady Galactica, a small ship that in no way properly represents the greatness of the El-Awadys. It does, on the other hand, reflect their sense of humility.

As Captain Nadia steers her way through the galaxy – as one does – she receives a red alert from Little Man In My Head, her constant companion (one of a multitude).

“Warning! Warning! Meteor shower approaches from the northwest!” shouts Little Man with his very big voice.

The meteor shower threatens to push the Galactica off course. It is severe today and we are heading right towards it.

Captain Nadia holds firmly onto the wheel and steers into the storm. By now, she has good experience with this sort of situation. There has been a meteor shower almost daily for the past four days.

“The trick, Little Man, is to continue in your original designated direction while steering into the meteors when necessary to provide a strong counter-energy so they do not cause you to veer off course, or, worse, to be thrown into a black hole,” the Captain explained.

Countless meteors bombard the small Galactica but it stands up to the pressure. Small it may be, but it is a sturdy ship.

This goes on for hours. Captain Nadia shows no signs of fatigue. This is what she has trained for. This is what she was born for.

Yes. There was more gusty wind today. Lots of it. Again. And that was the story I was using in my head to make the struggle a little fun.

This reminds me of the day I decided to risk cycling on the autovia in Spain. I could not

Before Captain Nadia...

Before Captain Nadia…

find any other way to get to my destination that day. I faced 30mph winds on the motorway. It was horrendous. At times I was barely moving forward no matter how hard I pedaled. Then, suddenly, I was pedaling up a steep hill with such unbelievable strength and speed that I yelled (in my head, of course), “I got my super powers! My super powers are finally here!!” Then I turned another corner and was facing the wind again rather than having it suddenly at my back. “Oh. Not yet, huh?” I realized I still had to wait a bit longer for those super powers to appear.

I cycled about 110 km today from Narbonne to Montpellier. I’m getting used to all this to such a degree that it all feels rather uneventful. I get up, I go to work on my bike for several hours, find myself a new home for the night, shower, eat, and relax for the evening. That’s what everybody does, isn’t it?

I am even getting a proper weekend off this time round. Hubby is coming over to

...after Captain Nadia

…after Captain Nadia

Montpellier tomorrow morning, inshallah, and we’ll have a nice couple of days together before I get back to the Galactica and do what I do best – combatting meteor showers and enemy ships (all those big trucks that swoosh by me, threatening to send me into a ditch). And let’s not forget Captain Nadia’s role in fighting racism. While passing through this small planetary body today, she noticed a racist sticker on its entrance sign. It is no more. “I have my eye on you, you racist bastards,” Captain Nadia proclaimed. “Not on my watch, you don’t!” And she continued on her way, certain that the world was just that little bit cleaner for the removal of one idiotic sticker.

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