Travel

Nordkapp – If things can go wrong…

Well, the day started well. Got to Penrith station with plenty of time, even got a notification that Lancet had arrived in Tromsø. Brilliant! Hop on the train to Manchester Airport and mid way in get the message my connecting flight was cancelled due to a pilot strike. Contact the airline and they are working on a solution. No panic, things will work out!

As the train enters Manchester we get told that everyone has to get off at Picadilly as the wonders of Network Rail strike again and no trains are able to get too or from the Airport. I’ve plenty of time, I put in space for issues. And so comes a bus trip to the Airport.

The rat run that is Manchester Airport is always “fun” to get around, and today was training day for the security staff. I get talking to them later and it’s to get enough staff in for the summer rush. Doing my usual bring a diabetic I turn up with a rather huge bag of sharp pointy things, bleepy things, and liquids… All the things airport security folks love! They were good, but due to training they were seriously slow, as in an hour to get through security! This resulted in the run through the airport to get to the gate. But on a plane finally and on my way to Oslo.

Coming into land in Oslo was beautiful, trees all over. It was like a flight into Mirkwood. Due to the connecting plane being cancelled everyone had to collect their luggage and exist security. If you were going on further, and found another airline to take you (which I had by now) I would then have to go back through security and check-in. The only alternative did mean a 6 hour break in Oslo… That’s lots of tea supping basically watching planes come and go and admiring the beautifully designed airport in contrast to Manchester.

So off to security I go again. This started well enough with them being ok about all my diabetic hardware attached to me, they weren’t too happy about my clattering around in my cleats though! Normally I have to skip the body scanners as they can destroy my equipment, but in this case nope, they wanted me to remove the bits keeping me ticking and go through the scanner. After a few mins arguing over it I wasn’t going to win so relented and disconnected my pump (a box which injects me with insulin every 4 minutes to keep me alive). My other device called a Dexcom (you might of seen it mentioned on GCN recently as pro teams are using them to warn the riders before they bonk) reads my blood glucose level and consists of two parts, a sensor and a transmitter, and isn’t disconnectable unless you want to install a new one, and at £52 a time for a sensor which is destroyed of you remove it that’s not going to happen! So arguments later, I’m in the scanner.

Twenty mins later and the Dexcom is doing sweet sod all. I fiddle for ages and eventually get a signal or if it, which thankfully does seem to be fine for now but does have me concerned as it’ll be a major part of my arsenal that allows me to do rides like this, the Fred, or many other big rides which would be incredibly difficult without it (think many, a good 15+ blood tests over and over in a day, every day you are riding!

Landing into Tromsø was like a descent into Forochel, the sun not setting throughout the flight with a beautiful blue and orange glow on the horizon throughout the flight. I had to call the hotel earlier as they finish check-in at midnight, and the plane was going after that. The place is great, a hotel with bikes on the walls of the entrance hall. Love it! In need of a good night’s sleep and I’ll get reunited with Lancet on the morning. I can’t wait!

Written on May 2nd, 2019 by Allan