8 Questions To Ask A Touring Cyclist

By Jane Mountain | June 19, 2013

Today was the type of day I’ve been dreaming about. Nothing of note really happened. We got up, said goodbye to our new friend and relative Zenon, and then we lay around in the guest house.

Woohoo! Badly needed rest is actually happening.

stephen and his parents in losie poland

The famille Ewashkiw.

The only noteworthy event was a little kayaking trip on Lake Klimkowka. These photos are courtesy of Malcolm and Elizabeth.

stephen and jane kayaking

Water fowl.

Un-noteworthy days lead to nothing much to write about, so instead of our usual journal, I give you this.

8 Questions to Ask A Touring Cyclist

Everywhere we go, people ask us the same three questions. Where are you from? Where are you going? Where did you start? We are happy to share our story, but at the same time, we’re a little tired of the same old same old. So, if you ever meet a touring cyclist, here are some more interesting questions to ask.

Where did you sleep last night?

Sometimes this will elicit a dull response, such as “in a guesthouse” or “in the local campground”. But often the answer will be far more interesting. In a shepherd’s field. In a gas station parking lot. Outside a vampire-infested Romanian church. Fun!

How long have you been wearing that shirt?

For touring cyclists, the concept of hygiene isn’t quite the same as it is for normal people. We’re carrying three shirts, so changing them is not really a high priority. We do have the magic of Merino Wool on our side, so even if we haven’t changed our shirt for five, six, or 25 days, we still might not stink.

When’s the last time you wore underwear?

Most of us wear padded bike shorts, which means no undies most of the time. For a lot of tourers, the answer will probably be “I don’t remember”.

How’s the road surface around here?

This is one I advise not asking, as you’ll get a 9-part answer involving way more detail than you thought possible when discussing asphalt.

Do you need to plug something in?

The answer will always be yes, and we highly appreciate any spare electricity you may have.

What did you have for dinner?

Again, this might be something simple like “bad pizza”, but it also might be something more entertaining. An answer such as two chocolate bars, a raw potato, and a bag of peanuts would not be rare. Or it might be a stew made of everything left in the panniers. Or maybe deep fried rats.

Are you hungry?

The answer to this will always always always be “yes”. If you’re going to pepper us with questions, the least you can do is feed us!

Do you want fries with that?

Don’t ask. We do want fries with that. Always.  

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  2. Comment by Diane

    Diane June 22, 2013 at 7:35 am

    Loved this one Jane. Nice to get asmile first thing in the morning ( which is when we read your posts) xx

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