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欧州自転車レース追っかけ日記

欧州在住者が自転車レースを追い掛けてる日記とか

The road book is ready but I am not

The road book (detailed information booklet issued by A.S.O.) is ready

On the other hand I am not ready. I am going to use this PDF and delve into its contents as a guidance to decide where to go and what to do during the stages, where to stay at night and then when and how long to drive before stopping.

First of all, I have to cut up the road book into pieces as it has a total of 244 pages, viewing it on my old MacBook Pro 2010, iPad mini 2 or Google Nexus 5X could be a nightmare if I do it on its entirety.


I have basic watch plans and basic rules.

1. If the stage is flat, I usually wait at the Feed Zone.

2. If the stage is hilly, I usually choose the one that the peloton passes before 3 to 4 o'clock so that I have still time to drive to a camping site near next day's watch spot.

3. If the stage is a mountain one, I usually choose the mountain where I see friends, the highest mountain, where I have never been or a popular mountain.

4. I want to find a camping site before 20:00 as they are likely open until around 20:00 during summer.

5. A typical day's drive should be up to around 200 km or 250 km.

6. When possible, I want to climb some mountains if I can (physically).

7. I want to entertain myself by painting on the road.

There could be more smaller rules but they are not important.

A short jump: Tarbe - Tourmalet (Stage 14) to Limoux or Foix
A mild jump: Limoux - Foix (Stage 15) to M*icirc;me (Rest day)
A big jump: Albertville - Val Thorens (Stage 20) to Paris

Only the last jump can be a bit of pain. Others don't really matter at all. So the planning can be easier. Just following the simple rules of 1 to 3 can shape my itinerary automatically.

I was trying to split the PDF pages (244 pages in total) so that I can easily browse them. macOS's standard Preview software can do it theoretically but my weak MacBook Pro 13-inch 2010 proved to be too weak to handle the task. Preview hanged every time I tried to cut page 30 out of it. I had several successful splitting before this page but this page 30 is full of layers (Stage 1 map so it has a lot of data).

I had to purchase a software program on App Store to do the task. The cheapest I could find was called "PDF Split" and I could successfully split all of the pages into single pages. Now I can start.



In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [The road book is ready but I am not]の続きを読む

テーマ:自転車ロードレース - ジャンル:スポーツ

  1. 2019/06/29(土) 07:51:04|
  2. Tour de France
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No time, no plans!

I have no time

I don't have any time to sit and plan for my vacation and the vacation is coming soon. The Tour de France 2019 kicks off on Saturday, July 6th but I leave for Brussel on Thursday, July 4 to see the Team Presentation.

Bob Jungels was not selected. He is not there this summer. Who should I cheer for? I have a vague idea what to do during the Tour.

For some unknown reasons (territorial?), Amazon Germany refused to deliver some T-shirts that I wanted to wear. "Trump 2020 Re-elect Make Liberals Cry Again" T-shirt!! They don't deliver it to me.

If I have no particular individual to cheer for, I would cheer for President Trump. I will keep painting something like "Trump 2020" "Make liberals Cry Again!" or "(Your Nation) First!" I have no doubt that people around me eventually ask me to do some names as usual and as usual I would ask for something in return.

I don't have time to make plans. Oh my God! I have to make plans. I don't travel and drive aimlessly.

I am planning to stay at a camping site in Overijse near Brussel for the first few days. This place is not too far from Brussel but not too close to it, either. I know the town (Finish of BP, Brabantse Pijl) and it is a relatively quiet place with a lot of green.

Then where should I drive to? I have no idea for the moment. I simply haven't had the time to look for possible candidate places to watch the race.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [No time, no plans!]の続きを読む

テーマ:自転車ロードレース - ジャンル:スポーツ

  1. 2019/06/26(水) 16:26:06|
  2. Tour de France
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Vaccination, Microship implantation and EU passport

She is now an EU resident

So I went (on foot me but Hannah being carried in my arms) to the vet doctor who practices about 1 mile (1.5 km or so) away from my current residence.

As I knew that she (Hannah) did not like being carried in a bag, in other words, she did not like confinement, I just took her in my arms with a collar and a leash (elastic). As I had written before, every single harness I could find was too large for her and I was left with only one choice, a collar to tie her down to the passenger's seat while travelling with me.

This "Kitten" collar is made of nylon material and with a latching device. I was puzzled at first when I did not find any releasing mechanism on this buckle. It seemed that the only way I release it was by force.

It proved to be true (that it did not have any locking mechanism) and I knew why or how it was made so. While on the way to the doctor, Hannah got restless and climbed on my neck or arm getting out of my arms, she managed to jump off me and landed on the ground. She was OK but I was puzzled when I could not secure her with my very elastic leash.

The buckle was open! I knew at this point that this release-less mechanism was a security feature to avoid unintended incidents of a cat hanging herself/himself when she/he gets caught by the collar up a tree twig or something.

I used to use only elastic collar on my cats (back in the days when I had cats in Japan) to avoid this unintended hanging. I sometimes had to go out in the garden to look for the missing elastic collar on a tree twig or in the bush when one of my cats came home without one. So it worked (as I wanted it to)!

This poses a bit of problem. I don't want the buckle to be unbuckled while I carry her. I don't intend her to go wandering on her own at any time. So I have to make sure the buckle to be tightly closed.


Hannah update

Now she is an EU resident with a valid passport. It took me 5 years to get this status (long time resident status) but as she was born here, she got it on the fly. I envy her.

She had two hypodermia shots and subsequently an injection of a microchip (with a syringe much bigger than the previous two shots). Before the third shot, the doctor told me that she might wince a bit. She did not. Wow! She is one tough girl!

I paid and I left for home on foot as the same way I came. She was OK but for the rest of the day she was a bit calmer than usual and spent much of the time on my lap sleeping. How sweet!

Other things

There are a lot of things that I have to take care of before the Tour.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Vaccination, Microship implantation and EU passport]の続きを読む

テーマ:猫のいる生活 - ジャンル:ペット

  1. 2019/06/25(火) 16:12:19|
  2. Cats
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Things to take on the camping car trip next month!

Show must go on!

Things to do: Cat business first!

I have to talk to a veterinarian first to find out about the things to be done. I called the veterinarian whom I had business with when I found a stray cat last November (2018) and asked for an appointment. Now I have one on Monday (24th of June).

I will ask about Hannah's vaccination, microchip implant and other matters. She is now only about 8 weeks old
but is she eligible for those (vaccination and implant)?

How do I get an EU passport for her? Is it issued by the local city office? At least I know that the dog tax is paid at the local city office as I was told by a colleague of mine.

Monday, after this visit to the pet doctor I am going to go to the car port (belonging to a friend of mine) and finally open the box containing the Saris Axis 2-bike rack. I want to make a unboxing video but I am not so sure if I can do it.

At his garage I deposited a log of my stuff and I will pick up some of them and put them together. Things that I will take on my trip next month.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Things to take on the camping car trip next month!]の続きを読む

テーマ:自転車ロードレース - ジャンル:スポーツ

  1. 2019/06/22(土) 16:37:01|
  2. Tour de France
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Occupied with Hannah but the show must go on.

Hannah is very well

She eats, plays and sleeps. She is growing up rapidly.

I have to make an appointment with the doctor (a veterinarian, of course) to see if she needs some vaccination or how do I get an ID chip implanted.

I am planning a cross-border trip with her in July so I may need a valid EU passport for her in case the Police (France and Belgian) stop me and ask for my ID and hers.

Face recognition activated

Have I got a new latest iPhone or something that has this feature? No, I have not.

I am talking about Hannah. She seems (or definitely) to have imprinted my face as a friend (guardian angel) by now successfully. She won't run away when she sees me. She comes to me when she sees me now.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ
[Occupied with Hannah but the show must go on.]の続きを読む

テーマ:自転車ロードレース - ジャンル:スポーツ

  1. 2019/06/14(金) 05:33:12|
  2. Bike Races
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Hello. My name is Hannah.

Hannah, a palindromic name

So I named my girl cat Hannah. It first got my attention when I saw the movie "Arrival" and the name was given to the girl whose 'flashback sytle' appearances carried mysterious bearing in the plot of the story. I liked the movie.

Anyways, I liked the palindromic nature of the name. Secondly, Hannah sounds almost like a Japanese word "Hana", which means among others "Flower" in Japanese.

It also sounds like "Hana", which means "Nose" and it could also be used in a certain phrase "the beggining".

URL (Wikipedia): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arrival_(film)

Since she is a girl, I wanted her name to be pretty in both in English (or any Western Languages) and my native Japanese.

Notes:

Thursday evening I got her. She was a bit scared of the changes (new environment, new people and so on). She ate well (the soft food that I gave).

Friday, she was still shy (scared) of the new environment. She ate well but soon after eating, she scurried away in the corner under something where she could hide herself. In the morning (the first morning together), I noticed she peed on the clothes. She did not find the toilet I prepared for her. I did know if she had learned to use one or just too scared to use the one that I prepared for her.

Saturday, I took her on a small drive to a friend's place where I had to deal with the water damage. She was not happy with the drive but after eating in the garage where I was cleaning something, she slept in my instant Kangaroo pocket (my tacked T-shirt) for a while. On the way back home she got restless so I had to stop in the parking of a highway gas station.

From the smell, I knew she pooed in the carriage bag. Quickly I took care of the poo and held her again in my Kangaroo pocket where she slept peacefully for a while before hitting the road again. I felt that our ties were getting formed gradually.

And to my greatest relief, I noticed that she began to use the toilet. She knew how to use it after all. What a nice girl!

Sunday, I had a rendez-vous with a friend of mine who owns a Chihuahua. An Instagram collaboration, so to speak. I originally thought I would walk to the designated park but I was lazy and I had to drive there (10 minutes or so). She got restless inside the carry bag. She does not like it. I have to see if she like the shell type bed that I bought from Amazon Germany.

Anyway, the weather was good. As soon as I let her out of the bag, she again scurried away in the samll nearby bush to hide herself. She was not afraid of me but she needed some shields.

So the Chihuahua and her owner joined me. As you may know Chihuahuas are known to have only one setting notch, "Hyper". They don't seem to have other notches like calm, gentle, mild, joyful, active and so on. When they react, they are hyper excited. Hannah was not used to dealing with a Chihuahua. Hannah was receptive but was puzzled and got defensive when this Chihuahua got hyperactive. No fault on the Chihuahua! They are just so.

I noticed something. Since the this new surroundings (the park, people, a dog and so on) made Hannah feel not at home, she looked up to me for help and comfort. She did not scurried away but began to cling on to me. She climbed on to my leg until I caught her and held her in my Kangaroo pocket.

I put her in the hood of my hoodie (the second Kangaroo pocket) and she stayed there comfortably while we walked to the city center to get some water.

After this adventure back in the car she slept quite a while in my Kangaroo pocket. After these events I definately noticed the changes in her behavior. She now trusts me and seeks comfort and security from me.

Monday (Today) I took her out to the nearby park. I used the carry bag to take her out but soon she got restless. I let her out on the lawn but she either ran to the close bush or tree foot or came to me. I ended up carring her in the hood where she comfortably and peacefully slept.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Hello. My name is Hannah.]の続きを読む

テーマ:猫のいる生活 - ジャンル:ペット

  1. 2019/06/10(月) 15:52:50|
  2. Cats
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Water damages

Damages caused by a torrent rain fall

It rained. It poured last evening around 21:00 accompanied by a lot of lightnings and thunders.

It was only a short while and there was no real damages reported as far as I know.

This morning I received a series of messages from a friend of mine. I am renting his garage for free for a while. I deposited cardboard boxes and others.

He first asked if I had stored some water bottles inside one of those boxes as he had found severa boxes fallen off and there was water inside his garage.

I knew of no water bottles within my belongings so I replied that it must have been the water coming from outside the garage as it had rained the previous night.

Soon he confirmed that my assumption had been correct.

A micro flash flooding had occurred.

A day later I went to there to assess the damages and the next day I came back with my cat to clean up the mess. He (the resident) had already done some clean-up and I was there to take care of my damaged cardboard boxes. Nothing major has happeded to my relief.

Kitty update

I can not 100% confirm the sex of this baby cat but I believe it is a girl as the adoption intermediate madam had suggested. According to her, she is about 6 weeks old. So she was born toward the end of April. Let's say she was born April 26th-ish. Hahaha!

She eats the soft food (baby food) that I bought very well. She likes to be held close to my chest / abdominal area wrapped around in the T-shirt like I am a kangaroo mom.

The first day, when I reached for her, she made a kind of hissing noise. She did not know who I was so this response was natural. She still hisses at me (to be exact, at my hand) when I reach for her. I think she eventually stops doing so.

I am writing this singlehandedly as I am holding her with either of my arms. She is so cute.

I niticed that she has not learned to use the toilet yet. There was another water damage in my room several hours later than the one I described above. [Water damages]の続きを読む

テーマ:猫のいる生活 - ジャンル:ペット

  1. 2019/06/07(金) 20:35:15|
  2. Diary
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TomTom iOS app update and kitty update

TomTom iOS app major update?

Or just a scheme to collect more money out of the customers?

TomTom's iOS app has received a major (?) update. I upgraded mine.

Upon completion of the app upgrade (update) and opening of it, the app prompted me to update the map data, too.

Here I noticed that there was no option of the Western Europe (region) package but the map data have been shredded into pieces (by country, additional pieces like Germany or France in three or more pieces, ferry connection data in pieces and so on).

Is this how they (TomTom BV) collect more money (yearly fees for the use of their map data) from their customers?

I am using them (map data) for free because I have been a TomTom's iOS app (Western Europe) user since 2010 (??) and recently (2 year ago? when they decided to have just one app for all regions) received a free upgrade.

In the future I have to decide if I want to continue to use the app and the data by subscribing or stop using it.

When I decide to subscribe, would I be charged by data amount or be able to download any data with a fixed fee?

The problem is map data got bigger and bigger. Now my iPad mini 2 (32 GB) can not get all the Western Europe map on it.

So I downloaded BeNeLux, France, Germany and some other samll pieces of map data for the moment. My iPad mini 2 (32 GB) is full and can not take any more.

iOS 13

iOS 13 won't be available for my iPad mini 2 according to what I learned on the Internet. It's OK. My iPad mini 2 will be dedicated TomTom navigation app device and a camera (and video camera) soon.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ
[TomTom iOS app update and kitty update]の続きを読む

テーマ:日記 - ジャンル:日記

  1. 2019/06/06(木) 14:38:15|
  2. Bike Races
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ETCA is Thursday, 7 June 2019

ETCA is set to 07/06/2019 (European style)

Estimated Time of Cat Arrival or maybe Estimated Time of Kitten Arrival (ETKA) is set to Thursday, June 7th 2019.

For the moment I have no idea what my kitten is like. I have no information right now. This is partly because the kitten that I am going to adopt is still with his/her mother cat now and the person who is going to take it to me has not seen it.

I will be ready by then.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [ETCA is Thursday, 7 June 2019]の続きを読む

テーマ:猫のいる生活 - ジャンル:ペット

  1. 2019/06/04(火) 15:40:54|
  2. Cats
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Mazda MX-5 Trailer Hitch Part III (ND - European)

Mazda MX-5 Trailer Hitch

rearview02.jpg

These are the documents (manuals, installation instructions and others) that I've got.


First of all, these are the pages of the European style "towball" that I got.

They are reduced in size. Clicking on the small index images will magnify them to some extent but won't be easily legible. For more you should always go to the URL (www.terwa.nl)

terwa01.jpg

terwa02.jpg

terwa03.jpg

terwa04.jpg

These above are followed by 4 pages (in 4 languages) describing the detachable system.

And then I've got 3 pages installation instructions (electric scheme).

ediagram01.jpg

ediagram02.jpg

ediagram03.jpg


Finally, I've got the installation instructions of the "female" (as opposed to the "male" towball) part on MX-5 behind the rear bumper.

female002.jpg

female001.jpg

As you can see, the part installed (bolted) on the chassis is rather compact (or small). This won't allow the vehicle to tow any heavy trailer and this is why the total system is intended for a bike rack or similar devices.

What do you think?

Is it a good idea or not so?

I am expecting a cat and I am planning to open the unopened box that contains the Saris Axis 2-bike rack.

How about making the video of filming these two events together? Well, I would love to do it but do I have the skill and equipment (and time) to do it?


Trump 2020 and Make America Great Again! caps

trump2020cap.jpg

I am thinking of getting one but most of them seem to come from (shipped from) China and the EST is vague. There are some other design variations but the one I want ("Trump 2020") can not be delivered to Luxembourg.

So I decided to order a T-shirt with a similar design motif.

Trump2020T.jpg

I am looking forward to meeting American (people from the USA) spectators during the Tour de France this Summer!

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [Mazda MX-5 Trailer Hitch Part III (ND - European)]の続きを読む

テーマ:カスタム - ジャンル:車・バイク

  1. 2019/06/02(日) 16:31:45|
  2. Mazda MX-5
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120 mm? Really?

Are they really 120 mm tall in diameter?

scooterwheels.jpg

I received the wheels along with other items from Amazon Germany. These were going to replace the old and battered wheels (100 mm in diameter and one of them has developed a flat spot which sends not a "good vibration").

When I looked for them I was a bit puzzled that they were too expensive for my rather old battered second hand scooter that cost only €8.

Anyway, they cost me somewhat close to €30 and I found out why when they arrived. Their wheels were made of metal (aluminum) and well CNC machined as opposed to the old ones made of plastic of sorts.

Upon opening the box and taking them out of it, I had to realize that they were strikingly bigger (than what you know). I was a bit skeptic if they were really 120 mm in diameter. I first suspected that they (the seller) sent me a wrong pair of wheels. They did not.

Before ordering these, I measured the original wheels and figured out they were originally 100 mm in diameter as they were around 95 mm(the worn out 5 mm of urethane accounted for). I figured (or imagined by just looking) that 1 cm (10 mm) in radius won't do any rubbing on the scooter.

I was wrong. The difference that I saw in size was not 10 mm but 15 mm in radius and not 20 mm but almost 30 mm in diameter.

No wonder they looked strikingly huge.

I installed them and learned that the front tire actually rubs the fork slightly. Soon (and eventually) the rubbing will stop once the surface of the urethan wears off.

In Japanese: 続きをどうぞ [120 mm? Really?]の続きを読む

テーマ:日記 - ジャンル:日記

  1. 2019/06/01(土) 15:39:23|
  2. Diary
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Leopard

Author:Leopard
ロード自転車レースが好きでロードレースを追いかけてます

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