I have watched the transformation of the Vuelta cyclists – from a slightly fit mixed bag of vagabonds to a group of pretty well honed long distance cyclists. Today I watched a group work together to cheat the wind a little and make a crazy trucking road just a little safer. No real communication passed between them to make this happen. Everyone just assumed a role and then took to it without thought or complaint.

I watched Virginia stop for lunch after 60kms. She and her boyfriend Jason had taken an unplanned detour in the morning (not for the first time!) and it was barely even mentioned upon their arrival. Virginia was bouncing around like she had just had a long morning in bed and they commented that it is only another 60kms in the afternoon. I love it when it becomes ‘only 60kms this afternoon.’

Without noticing the tour riders have changed in their attitude as to what they do on a daily basis. Were are all in camp sitting somewhere in the Atacama desert. The temperature is in the high 30`s, the wind is blowing and there is no shade. Still there are no complaints – just the tent, soup and water routine – followed up by  a not very cold beer.

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