GCDS round-up 6: The tail-off

12:41 pm community, freesoftware, gnome, guadec

The last in the series!

After Mobile Day on Wednesday, I chilled out on Thursday morning, and attended the GNOME Foundation AGM where I gave a quick report on GNOME Mobile, before heading off to play in the fourth annual FreeFA world cup, with the mad dogs and Englishmen who went out in the midday Gran Canaria sun to play football for 2 hours.

As is usual, the team I played on won and the team that Bastien played on lost :-) After the match, though, I let Bastien in on my secret: always play with the team with the most local guys. Why? Because the people from the local team who take time off to go play in the patch usually play regularly. The rule has never let me down :)

Another highlight of the match was Diego, ending the match without breaking a sweat, finally broke a sweat just as we were taking the group photo at the end.

Thursday evening, met up with Federico Mena, and Jonathan and Rosanna Blandford for a very interesting hippie BOF, with conversation varying across a bunch of subjects, including compost heaps, growing trees and herbs, architecture pattern languages, cultural variations in building design, and more. On to dinner, and home to the hotel early, ready for the cycling trip on Friday.

Up early on Friday, down to breakfast, no sign of Aaron or J5 yet, so I start eating without them, and go get started with the bike. Turns out we were sitting in different parts of the lobby in the Fataga.

Armed with bikes, we set off around 9:30 to get to Arucas, on our way to Teror. We made pretty good going of it along the waterfront, and after taking it fairly easy on the edge of the motorway (surprising that we could cycle there actually, but apparently that’s the only way to get where we were going) along the coastloine, we finally came to the intersection for Arucas. John was starting to find the going a little tough already, but nothing had prepared us for what was next.

The nice straight GC-20, from the coast to Arucas, was steep, much steeper than I had expected (if I had to guess, I’d say an average of around 8% with some bits around 10%). It was a struggle, but we got to the top, before a nice long downhill stretch to come into Arucas, after which we all needed a water stop. We agreed that the goal of Teror (600m higher and 15km further on) was probably not realistic, so we decided to cut across on the GC 300 to Tamaraceite, grabbing lunch in the first village we came to on the road.

And so we set out after a nice long break & a walk around the “cathedral” in Arucas, the town gardens and the main shopping district (with a detour by a farm supplies store) for what we thought would be a nice light 20 minute cycle to the next town over. No such luck.

After climbing a nice hill straight out of Arucas, we had our reward – a really nice winding fast descent towards Tenoya. But when we got up to the village of Tenoya, we couldn’t find a restaurant anywhere. Eventually a nice old man pointed us towards “la cantina”, which turned out to be a bar with some very nice young men standing outside calling us crazy. So we decided to go to the next village over.

Through a road tunnel – watch out for the oncoming cars! Traffic lights don’t know about bikes going through and we didn’t have lights. then we got to a sort of service station with a promising sign: “Supermarket in Las Mesas: 500m”. If you ever come across that sign, don’t believe it. Between us and lunch was a killer hill and 2km of dusty road.

We settled in to la Cantina to weather the hottest part of the day, had some nice lunch (food always tastes better after physical effort) and set off again to get back to Gran Canaria. Getting around Tamaraceite was a bit tricky, we took one or two wrong turns before finding the nice small back road to get us on the right track. Then one last killer hill, up the Cuesta Blanca to the major shopping district, and then downhill all the way through the roundabouts, right down to the hospital near the golf club, and home.

It was a great ride, lots of fun, and I’m happy I made time for it. Aaron & John were great partners.

After that, packed my bags, out for dinner with Lefty, home to bed quite early, and up with the birds for an early flight, when I got to run into lots of GCDS attendees in the airport – a nice breakfast with Guy Lunardi, Jonathan & Zana and Owen Taylor (IIRC), and I was off on my plane once more. Homeward bound, for a few days, before heading off to OSCON and the Community Leadership Summit.

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