18 November 2007


Today I rode with my friend Thomas Holden 40 km hard from his place on jeep tracks and single track, and another 20km to get to and from his house.

We went south and around a couple of small hills that have something to do with the volcano Mnt Meru. The last hill Thomas took me on a small trail the almost completely circumnavigated the hill half way up. Really cool, in and out of ravines, smooth, and views all over. I was kicking myself for not bringing a camera.

We ended at Thomas's house so he could give me a couple bottles of slime tube sealant and some road and mountain tubes. Remember that as I continue with my story.

Thomas's mother was there with her husband and right away I was thinking she does not have an American accent. I eventually asked if she was British and she said yes. She even still has a British passport. Then I found out that even Thomas has a British passport!! He has been one of my riding buddies for several years and I never knew that. He lived most of his life in the good ol USA.

After the best omelet in my life at their house I started riding home. I got about a kilometre and the back tire went flat. There was a big thorn sticking out and I managed to pull that out and was pretty sure the slime in the tyres would do the job, so I pumped it up and spun the tyre and rode on. I made it about 400 metres before it was flat. I debated to take the tube out and check but pumped and rode on. That is how it works sometimes. You pump and ride 1-5 times and then eventually the tube stays up. If it is more than 4 times you better check it out. And today was one of those rare days. So I pulled the tube out and checked the tyre and tube and found some thorns but nothing major. I pumped the tyre up again and it seemed better and rode another 500 metres only before I had to stop again. Damn.

Whenever you pull an old tube with slime it might not seal the holes the first time, so I pumped and rode a couple of times and started to get frustrated and wondering if I should patch.

After about 12 times I was glad I was riding alone as there I was with no less than 4 extra tubes and two bottles of slime, including the spare tube with slime I started out with in the morning. I put in a new tube and squirted in some slime , pumped it up and road home.

Please keep this to yourself.


  1. Howdy.

    Came across your blog on a Chicago bicycle listserve discussion on flat tires. Hows that for a tangent.

    I've never used the slime stuff, never heard anything good about it, doesn't sound so great from your description.

    But then again, I'm not battling African Volcano Jungle thorns.

    Anyway, I know blogs feed on comments. Yours is quite sharp, nice photos and content, really fascinating.

    Nice work.

  2. Thanks T.C.

    Somewhere in one of my early blogs i state " i wont ride with someone off road who doesnt have slime in their tyres." I think that day was one of those flukes, probably the slime is too old.