Bernice has put her foot down on riding to the airport before 5am.
In compliance I asked my bike buddy Cheusi to be my "shuttle". He showed up at 430 am and we were on our way at 445am.
I was surprised by the amount of traffic this time. Saturday morning?
Anyway the ride to Kilimanjaro Airport was uneventful.
With first light Cheusi turned around and I cranked on hard. I arrived 655 for the 750 flight, plenty of time except......
There were no baggage handlers to be seen at the departure area, and none at the arrival area either. I panicked for a few seconds.
I rode over to the parking ticket booth and begged a man in the booth to lock my bike to a tree outside the booth. He to wake a guy sleeping in a taxi for permission. I locked the bike, rearranged stuff in panniers into my overnight bag and took them all and ran over to the check in counter. I checked in with plenty of time (5 min).
The check in guy called me back as my pump was falling out of the pannier I hadn't closed completely. That was good of them. Now I remembered everyone was extra nice at the airport. The security guy at the entrance waved me through after I confirmed I was the one who rode bike to airport. He did hold me for a moment to assure himself that I had found a safe place to park my bike.
I went to the men's room as everyone else stood in a long line to pass through the scanner.
I wet a corner of a small towel i brought along and cleaned some sweat off and changed into my "Managing Director" clothes. Stuffed my sweaty jersey, shorts etc into the bag. There was still a long queue waiting to go through the scanner so I sat down to relax. I then bumped into my baggage handler buddy Innocent. So I gave him the key to my lock to take my bike home. We exchanged numbers AGAIN.
The next morning I was back at the same airport. Innocent was nowhere to be seen.
I called him and he said he was at the arrivals side and was coming. But then in the men's room I bumped into him cleaning it. Long story short. I don't know what happened but the tube had 20 lousy patches and was still flat, the bottle cage was broken, and later I found the front rack mounts had slipped down, so even the brake would not work.
Later I think he loaned it to someone who carried a person on the front rack. Then they rode through some thorns and fell over and stepped on the bottle cage.
Need to work on Innocent. He needs to say hey I made a bad judgement and have learnt my lesson instead of creating stories that don't hold water.
I stopped at Pete's on the way home and hung out. I was a bit tired reaching home.