The name European Extravaganza was coined by Aldo a few hours after Alexander cited the original idea.
The two friends had made the short trip to Arran late last year and earlier this year they were joined by Mac for the Oban jaunt. Both trips were only for a few days but gave them all a taste for the longer adventure. And after the wind and rain that battered the Scottish coast on their most recent outing, all jokingly promised that the next trip would be in a warmer climes.
One Sunday afternoon, after one of the weekend excursions, the novel idea was introduced by its creator in little more than its original simple state. The thought of travelling from Sagres, looping round the Black Sea and finishing in the Arctic Circle was met with bemusement and hilarity by both Aldo and Mac, though they stopped short of rolling on the floor laughing. The jibes kept coming even though Alexander had expanded on the original one liner. He took the friendly banter on the chin and joined in the laughter knowing that both his cycling buddies had already warmed to his idea.
Mac left and thought that was a laugh, a week in Europe would be good but would these two guys get fit enough? He wouldn’t think too much more about it until the discussion arose again, his mind was focused on more immediate matters, like the date he had that night with the Vietnamese girl he had met a few weeks before . Remembering her sweet smile made him feel warm inside and thinking about her perfect young body and flirty smile made him feel uncomfortable, wishing he’d changed out of his Lycra shorts before driving.
Aldo on his journey home thought about little else. He thought about the rules his friend had imposed making the idea seem sensible after all. A week each year; although it would restrict them in a lot of ways it would help the decision making process and guarantee a trip each year. How many years would it take from start to end, he checked this out later that same day and wasn’t slow to realise the laugh they would all have when he informed them. The trip of well over ten thousand miles would take a minimum fourteen years to complete. He liked the idea of starting from the point where they finished the previous year, a virtual tyre track across the continent. Transporting the bikes might be a ‘bit of a bugger’ he thought, but knew that could be overcome, he was sure Alexander hadn’t considered this, he was correct. The other thing he did when he got home was to relay the story to his wife, not in an excitable manner but in a way to highlight the comical events as the story had unfolded. She laughed, though stopped short of rolling on the floor laughing.