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July 2nd, 2007 | categorizilation: all categories,Switzerland

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Right, so physically, this skateboarding thing seems to be working out pretty good. Logistically, however, things are a little more tricky.

I got away from Fribourg bright and early, only to be stalled for 30 minutes under a bridge waiting for the rain to stop. I read some more of Complete and Utter Failure by Neil Steinberg while waiting.

Crying statue in Fribourg, Switzerland

The rain stopped, and I carried on through puddles and spitting rain.

I discovered today however that cycle speedometers are not very suitable for skateboards. The small vibrations from the road travel through the board into the delicate computer unit, causing water to be vibrated in. By the end of the day, the computer unit was showing all sorts of crazy characters on the screen.

The moral of the story is that I think I will need to get a GPS to track my progress and speed. The not so good thing about a GPS unit is that the batteries only typically last up to 12 hours. That’s about 1.5 days of skating. But I will see what can be done…

Big thanks to Stefan Roth from Sport Boerse in Bern for giving me some windsurfing foam rubber for my board. Dave from BoardFree.co.uk inspired this idea – it not only saves your feet from the vibrations from the road, but also gives better grip and durability than the standard grip tape that skateboarders use. The grip on my board was already rubbing off after only three days on the board!

Smooth riding with surfing foam in Bern, Switzerland

Smooth riding with surfing foam in Bern, Switzerland

I arrived in Bern early afternoon, and met up with my CouchSurfing.org host Patricia in the evening.

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    Permanent Link     Comments (8)

Comment by Bram — July 4, 2007 @ 10:28 am | post a comment

Hello Rob,

Good to read that you like riding your board more and more. Let's hope the weather forecast for Basel is correct (better wheather this weekend). Do you have a route plan from Bern to the U.K. ?

Are you still planning to visit Holland ? You are more than welcome to stay at our house.

Take care ! Bram

Comment by slim — July 4, 2007 @ 11:07 pm | post a comment

Rob, I recently bought a very light (2.3 oz.) gps unit called the Garmin Forerunner 101 that straps to one's wrist. It has limited functionality compared to bigger/heavier gps units but it is perfect for skateboarding, running, or cycling to track distance, time, speed and max speed. Perhaps you can find this model in Europe?

Hope the rains stops for you soon. Enjoy the trip, and we'll see you when you reach the west coast of America!

Comment by Aunty Les — July 4, 2007 @ 11:59 pm | post a comment

What's with the standing-under-a-bridge-in-the -rain business? Can't skateboards be ridden in downpours.

Comment by Rob Thomson — July 5, 2007 @ 12:37 am | post a comment

@ Slim – Thank you for the suggestion of the Garmin Forerunner 101. It looks like just the thing I need. Plus, it's not too expensive. Sounds perfect. Now I just have to find somewhere to buy it…

Comment by Rob Thomson — July 5, 2007 @ 12:39 am | post a comment

@ Aunty Les – The standing under a bridge thing has to do with the fact that I sent my waterproof clothing back to NZ the other day. It was too heavy. So now I'm on the prowl for some lighter weight stuff.

Comment by Tim — July 5, 2007 @ 3:09 am | post a comment

just skate in your polyprops, they only carry 1% of their weight of water.

Comment by mahmoud — July 6, 2007 @ 5:07 am | post a comment

bro – all this stuff you send back to new zealand… where does it go. No panic cause i'm headed to canada in a month, but I do wonder where my cooker got to between there and here…

Comment by Meg — July 8, 2007 @ 11:38 am | post a comment


It is amazing following your travels…I love your video clips! Hope you are doing well on this b-e-a-utiful Saturday. Sending good vibes your way:)


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