It has been 7 days since we rejoined the Tour d’Afrique after our amazing 2 week vacation. Things feel a little different now. New riders have arrived and some have left. Their presence is missed greatly. For me especially, Janet. We miss you lady!

The section started out in Arusha and we are heading south towards Malawi. Day 1 was a beautiful fast day on tarmac and Dave and I came in with quick times. Dave at 3 hours 11 min and me at 3 hours 30 minutes. I was feeling great after a 2 week rest.

The following days we hit rough roads again, but for some reason I could ride them well by now. Things were going great for 2 days on the gravel and dirt and I was feeling very strong. Dave was so strong that he finished the section in 4 place overall!

But I have a little story to tell you about this crazy tour, things can turn in a heartbeat. On day 2 of our off road riding I had a minor fall and cut my knee open. Dr. Luke was there at lunch when I arrived, gave it a quick clean and off I went on my merry way.

Cut to 2 days later…

I awoke to severe pain and swelling in my leg and had to ride the bus considering I could hardly walk. That night, Dr. Luke took a look at my knee and decided that I could have broken my tibia. Holy crap, there goes my Tour d’Afrique. We set up an X-ray for the following morning and off we went. When I got out of the bush buggy, he saw it in the sunlight and decided that no, it is definitely an infection called cellulitis. I was already on antibiotics, so it should clear up. We went for the X-ray anyway to be safe and since it only cost $2 to have done. Can you believe the price of that one, I even got to keep it. Everyone was so kind at the hospital, all of the other patients were watching me limp and saying Pole Sana (very sorry) to me. Glad to let you know, the X-ray was fine.

However, 2 more days had gone by and my infection was spreading instead of getting smaller. My leg had doubled in size and the redness had spread from my ankle to my thigh and I was freaking out. Dr. Luke is fantastic and he decided last night that we would go on ahead to Iringa and see a surgeon there just to make sure that the infection wasn’t getting worse. Kristen came with me because I refused to let Dave give up his EFI for another hospital visit. Long story short… 2 hospital visits later, several different antibiotics, pain killers anti-inflamatories and bed rest have finally allowed me to stand up straight.

We have a rest day here in Iringa tomorrow, so hopefully after relaxing for an entire day in bed, while Dave takes care of the bikes and every other chore that is needed to be done, I will be able to get back on the bike. Riding the trucks is a painful experience!

We enter Malawi in 4 days time and we are back on good roads. I think that someone up there, just knew how much I hate riding on these terrible bumpy roads and decided to give me a break guilt free:) I will keep you posted on my leg, I am guessing one more day on the bus for me, but you never know, a day of good food and rest can do wonders.

Now let me tell you about Dave’s week. He road fast, hard and had a couple of baboons follow him trying to get to his water bottles full of Fast Fuel. I think it was that particular moment that put him into 4th. He probably took 15 minutes off of his time while he was being pursued by these vicious little monkeys:)

All in all it was a tough week. 7 days straight in wet and hot weather, very rough roads, long mileage and no suspension. Looking forward to some cruising on pavement.

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  1. Kiwi Princess

    Now Deb you are supposed to follow my example in how to kick butt in the racing category NOT other stuff like hospital stays. The only time that I have ever been confined to a hospital bed was for cellulitis!! Same thing..simple cut.. carried on training….leg blew up…wouldn’t listen…got on a plane and flew and ended up in hospital! Please be careful and take the recovery seriously. I did my usual sassy attitude trick of standing on my good leg and asking ‘what the hell do you know?’. The doc shut me up with a precise..’do you want to lose your leg?’ Needless to say I became a bambi and the she-devil disappeared. So…who cares that you are on Doris…who cares that you are losing time in this section..legs are good! How will you wear killer heels when you get home?
    Keep in contact.
    Take care…miss you

  2. Jim & Marlene Corbeil

    Deb. Listen to your friend. Dad and I are very worried. I know that Dave is there with you but things happen very fast.Please Take the time to recover. Love you both. Just very very worried. Love Mon and Dad.

  3. SammyB

    I skirted the same infection in the Costa Rican jungle, Deb. However, the iodene bath I gave it (ouchiewawa!) worked. You’re right though, it can happen in an instant. They say slow and steady wins the race… well, maybe not in this instance, but remaining healthy and safe is a sure way to get you crazy people back home… Keep your spirits up and I’ll keep up with the varietals from Bordeaux and elswhere.

  4. don caulfield

    Deb, I hope your leg is well healed by now,
    Dave, I think I have to speak to the grip dept.,and get you something more serious than a water pistol for those pesky critters,(the baboons). In the mean time we are up to our handle bars in snow and the temp. hovers around 20degrees below zero for days on end. You guys rock Happy Trails

  5. Angie & Mike

    God Deb… your leg looks sore! I agree that the only thing you should be concerned about is taking it easy and letting yourself heal. Don’t push yourself too hard…. you have a long time to go and being in the lead will mean nothing if you feel like crap!

    We’re thinking of you… you are one tough cookie :-)

  6. Teresa Wilson

    It is God looking after you Deb. I am so glad you are doing better. Stay positive embrace the experience good and bad. They will make you stronger. Lots of love from the Wilsons

  7. Lorri

    You guys are doing so awesome.
    OMG Deb…cellulitus is incredibly painful and highly resistant to antibiotics. It looks like you’re healing up well.
    Guess this means you’re not coming home now huh? LOL
    GREAT NEWS…your article on Kilimanjaro was published in the Toronto Star!
    Here’s the link:
    Don’t worry…I still have the paper copy of your last article put away for you, and I’m going out right now to grab you some copies of this one.
    Please take care of yourselves.
    We miss you more than you know.

  8. don carmody

    Mmm..but how much is this costing…. you could help the bottom line by riding unicycles.

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