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- check out our Monday blog on www.bmxmania.com for exclusive details you won’t find here. (Fyi, sometimes our Monday blog doesn’t appear until Wednesday … so check back often)
First, thank you to Hara who sent me kind words of strength and encouragement. After eating oatmeal and breaking camp, we pulled our gear together and mounted our bikes. We rode back out the way we rode in the night before … what a difference! The uphill roads that took over an hour to climb last night … took less than 15 minutes to fly down this morning! We reached speeds of 40 mph! It was the closest I’ve ever experienced to a “magic carpet ride” experience.
We merged onto Route 209 North and rode parallel to the Delaware River for quite a few wonderful miles. We were all impressed at the average speeds we were reaching on the flat runs: 14-18 mph. To us, that means that our biking skills are progressing, even if the uphill runs are still tough. We were all still feeling fatigued but we were re-gaining some pride.
We found ourselves hungrier today than most days. Unfortunately, there weren’t many opportunities to stop and feed the need. In the words of Frankenbutt, “how do they live around here without a convenience store for miles??” Damn, that man is spoiled! And, he has a coffee addiction!
While the Beast read her latest book, “Three Bags Full”, (a sheep detective story), Frankenbutt and boiled hot dogs in our fabulous $2 thrift store pot. Our primus stove heater the water quickly and within minutes we were placing hot dogs in the first 4 buns out of the bag. After we devoured them and fed one cut up one to Coco, we pulled more buns out of the bag, only to discover one that was the wrong color: GREEN!
Being raised in a household where my mom’s answer to the question: “Does this smell ok?” is “Stir it around a little, it’ll be alright”, I’m not one to “flip” over such a situation. I calmly walked back in and showed the young clerk my roll. He reacted to it a whole lot worse than any of us did. He offered me a fresh, new pack; I accepted, loaded the buns with hot dogs and continued lunch. One learns to take things in stride after being on the road for … how long? 7 weeks.
We lingered for awhile and returned text messages and emails. We got an especially FABULOUS email from my dear friend, Sheena that made all three of us happy! After a rough few years of doctor’s visits, she got an excellent report today and we can’t wait to celebrate with her and Phil when we get to Pittsburgh! Miss you, Sheena! Can’t wait to sit on the front porch and share drinks, stories and laughs!
I searched campgrounds in the Port Jervis area first since it was an important milestone for me that we cross into New York today. I was shocked at how much they were charging. $45 and up was the going rate and most of those either didn’t have water and electric available or were way off the beaten path, adding unnecessary miles to our route. I checked for choice hotels in the area; there were none. I checked hotels.com and their cheap room was $70, again off of our route; and then found the Days Inn @ $79 plus hotel taxes. I didn’t book it; figured we might find a local motel with a better deal.
Meanwhile, the Beast visited the local dress shop and the local yarn store. She likes to crochet and knit and was fascinated by giant knitting needles in the window. We got back on our bikes and headed towards Port Jervis. We spotted a “Scottish Inn”, pulled in and asked for a rate. $79! Shoot! We rode on.
When we returned to Frankenbutt, he looked worse; a little pale and he complained of nausea. I took my phone and booked the closest and most affordable hotel. I was pleased to see it was only 6 miles away AND it was across the NY state line in Port Jervis. We checked in and he’s resting and looking better. We’ll see what the morning brings. It looks like we have about 60 miles ahead of us to reach New Paltz, NY by mid-day on Thursday for a ride-in event. Every local we’ve spoken with has said the same thing: there are some tough hills ahead. So, time to rest.