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View from my room, Melk, AT.

View from my room, Melk, AT.

Clearing evening sky over the Donau, Melk, AT.

Clearing evening sky over the Donau, Melk, AT.

Along the Donau, Grein in the distance, AT.

Along the Donau, Grein in the distance, AT.

Day 16 - Linz to Melk, AT

114 km (71 miles). And easy ones at that. Early on in the day I met a group of Hungarians and we hit it off very well. Mihaly and, his wife Yulia, their friend Sandor and his 13 year-old son Peter. We got caught in showers several times but ducked into barns and cafes and never got very wet. And besides, the conversation and companionship was so amiable that I really didn’t mind a little bit of wet. They were more averse to the rain, having spent all day yesterday riding and getting soaked while I’d been taking my extra vacation day in Linz. We plan to ride together again tomorrow.

Mihaly, Yulia, Sandor, Peter and I were trying to dodge showers all day, very often unsuccessfully. Pöchlarn, AT.

Mihaly, Yulia, Sandor, Peter and I were trying to dodge showers all day, very often unsuccessfully. Pöchlarn, AT.

Day 15 - totally lazy again

I stayed in Linz again today but I have good excuses (really? I need excuses?)
First off, it was raining this morning and the prediction was for rain all day. I spent the first 8 days of this ride in the rain, not bad rain but rain, and I just didn’t feel like doing it again just yet. Second, my left hand was still partly numb after a whole day of not riding and I’d decided I wanted a medical opinion on it. Third, I was getting too good a deal at the Radisson to give it up (60% off). And fourth, and this was the one that was the final nail in the coffin, I need to slow my pace or I’ll end up waiting in Budapest for Adrian for too many days.
So I went to the Algemeines Krankenhaus (General Hospital), which had a voluminous, jammed, but well-organized walk-in clinic and an hour and a half later saw a doctor and three medical students who diagnosed dysfunction of the ulnar nerve. Indeed, the numbness in my hand traces exactly the route of that nerve. The doctor explained that there are two points along the ulnar nerve that lead to this problem, one at the elbow and the other on the heel of the hand on the opposite side from the thumb pad. That area is where one usually has contact with the handlebar, so that could be the source of the problem, but also possible is that this results from the pressure on the elbow that arose from the bursitis caused by my being hit by that driver back in May. It’s probably the combination of the two. Anyway, I bought an ace bandage today so I can pad the heel of my hand and I’ll see how it goes.
All that just took up the morning, so in the afternoon I went to the Lentos Kunstmuseum Some beautiful stuff there.

Day 14 - touristic day in Linz, AT.

0 km (0 miles). Catch that? Zero! Really nice to be fully off the bike for a day. Went to a cool museum (see video posts), took two naps, ate well. I’m meeting up with my buddy Adrian in Budapest and, barring mishaps, it should not be a problem to get there by our date.

Another kinetic exhibit at the Höhenrausch, Linz, AT.

Kinetic exhibit at the Höhenrausch, Linz, AT.

Parked barge at sunset,  Passau, DE.

Parked barge at sunset, Passau, DE.