The smell of cookies and poop

Well people, I have made it to Belgium safely, I have somewhat adjusted to Belgium time, and this place smells of cookies and poop.  I have now been on 3 fantastically flat and windy bike rides and smelled cookies and poop!  Okay let me explain the poop smell.

First off, there are farms and fields, and when there are farms and fields, well poop is bound to be smelled.  BUT, poop can also be smelled in bathrooms, like the one Elle and I are sharing with the mechanics.  The first day we thought the mechanics dropped a doozy, but the smell lingered.  So then after a few hours of this dank smell I decided it was coming from the heaters (it smelled of gas and sulfur), and thought since they hadn’t been turned on for awhile they stank.  Then I decided it couldn’t be coming from the heaters and it was coming out of the toilet.  No one spoke of this dank smell until Friday.  Friday afternoon we all started talking about this retched smell.  Elle thought perhaps it was coming from the sink, so we poured hot water down the sink.  That didn’t help.  It wasn’t coming from the sink.  After showering, I decided it was coming from the shower.  My final conclusion was…the shower.  After leaving the fan on all day, closing the bathroom door, and placing a towel at the crack of the door so we didn’t have to smell dank, we finally told Geoff, who spoke to the house owner, who came over, found the problem, solved the problem, and the poop smell is gone from our bathroom!  YES!  Turns out it came from the shower.  No more poop smell, but I think it permeated my senses because every so often I smell sulfury poop.  Gross.  Apparently, sulfury poop smells are really common in Belgium plumbing.  That’s rank.

Cookies.  Lets talk cookies.  We all know how much I love cookies…mmmm, the thought of cookies brings warm and fuzzy thoughts to my belly.     Elle and I have been on some wonderful rides since we arrived, and it appears that as we ride through these cute tiny little Belgium towns, everyone must be baking cookies, because they smell like freshly baked chocolate chip cookies.  It’s so warming to the senses.  If you feel the need to check out our rides you can go to my Strava page here.

So now that you know about Poop and Cookies, lets talk about my feelings.  Remember my last post how I said I was all emotional the week before heading over here?  Well once I got on the flights and landed I was doing a bit better.  Until today.  Post ride I almost broke down into tears out of pure stress and total lack of confidence.  I wont lie when I say how scared I am to race tomorrow.  I’m terrified, I’m nervous, I’m scared, I feel like….. the fat kid picked last for the team, yea that feelings hasn’t gone away, and it some what has gotten worse.  I can’t help the feelings, maybe after the first race I will feel better?  I feel like I’m surrounded by a bunch of really fast people who are so much better than I am, and I’m just here for the ride.  I feel like I’m going to get trampled, crushed, pushed around, and totally dominated at tomorrows race.  The rain has started and I’m sure the mud is building, only time will tell how I do.  I’m trying my best to have a positive attitude going into the race.  We received our numbers tonight and I’m number 20, but don’t be confused, because this is not my start position.  I’m actually number 41 on the grid.  What is that…6th row?  I can only go forward, and if I got backward I’m seriously concerned with my racing and might think about ending my racing career?

Life in the Eurocrosscamp house is going well too…uh..besides the sulfury dank smell coming from our shower, things are pretty good!  I had an adventure in the grocery store over here…if you read my blog post about the midwest last year you will understand how I feel about food.  Well now picture being in a foreign country where you can’t read any labels and I don’t really know what the heck I purchased until I opened it.  Such a mystery!

Upward and onward.  That’s all for now.  Miss you all back home, I will do my best to represent the PNW!


A cool line of trees


A neat church close by the house we are at. BIG tall church and old


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