Today was a day with three first times. The first one is me joining the annual bike ride of the local cyclist association of Groningen. Of course I invited some other recumbent riders using our Hunneligger forum. I thought there were only going to be five of us, but eventually nine recumbent riders showed up. The 'upright' riders were outnumbered if I counted correctly. Not that it mattered. Despite us not going very fast the weather was beautiful and sunny and we even explored a new bike path. I wasn't planning on doing the whole ride because I had to be back at the rowing club at 4 PM. So after the refreshing cola (a gift from the cyclist association) we enjoined in the marina of Meerwijck Ritsert and myself headed north.

I was right on time and even had time to replace the water in my bottle with fresh one. When I went downstairs to the hanger (where the boats are stored), put my belongings in the locker and went to the dock the boat was just placed in the water. But what's that? Aren't we rowing in our usual red Noorderlicht? Nope, this was a brand new Filippi 8+. Donated by the veteran men and named after their regular steer, Tineke Floor. The new boat rows beautifully. No humming of worn down sliding, old shoes or a hard seat. No, this was a fine boat. I even think we were the second team to row in it.

On my way home now. The last ride (about a week ago) with my Nazca Fuego I found out that the bike had passed 7000 kilometers and still feels great. But on my way home today the bike also got it's first. A flat tire. This week it crossed my mind 7000 kilometers without a flat tire was actually pretty good. And there you have it... a flat. Sadly I didn't have a repair kit with me, so I walked to the nearest house, just outside the city. There I could fix my tire, dry under a big umbrella. It was the second time the owner of the building had done a good deed, because that morning he assisted another cyclist with his flat tire. My next purchase will be a puncture repair kit.