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Did you ever have one of those mornings where you wake up, feeling like you just got into bed 5 minutes ago? Feeling cheated out of a night’s sleep BUT you actually slept? Well, that was how I awoke Thursday morning. UGH! I didn’t want to let the Beast and Frankenbutt down so I dragged myself out of the tent and got on with the business of preparing to ride. As I dressed and packed down, I felt like the rest of the world around me was moving just a few minutes ahead of me. I just didn’t feel like moving.
With everything packed down and loaded on bikes, we decided to roll out. Remembering that there was a bike trail ,to start the day, made it a little easier. In .2 mile, we were on a really pleasant, tree shaded bike path and I started feeling a little better. We rode along at a leisurely pace through one of my favorite scenarios: trees on both sides of the road stretched their branches out and formed a kind of tunnel of shade to ride through.
We stayed on the bike path for 12 miles until it ended in a small town that was having almost every sidewalk in the city replaced. We stopped to give Coco a break, use the bathrooms and get Frankenbutt a coffee. We watched as they poured concrete, pushed it around and then smoothed it to a nice finish. I was very tempted to sneak up and write “ride the nation” in the fresh setting concrete but lost my nerve. We rode down Main Street, past beautiful old Arts and Crafts style houses, where they had torn out the old narrow sidewalk and were widening it for the new sidewalk.
Our GPS led us to some county roads past corn fields and that was pleasant but I still found myself wanting to be off my bike. We came up on a truck stop that had a Taco Bell and a Subway and since it was nearing noon and eateries were few and far between, we decided we’d better eat. Frankenbutt and I split a foot long Tuna Fish sub and the Beast enjoyed some soft tacos. Coco enjoyed a little bit of each of our lunches.
During lunch, we looked ahead on our GPS to see what the camping prospects were and we found 2 within 40 miles. We called both and found the further one offered the best pricing. Since we are still hoping to make the Brookville, OH ABA race on Saturday, we also thought it best to choose the further one. We programmed the address in and then checked emails, etc. hoping to have heard back from any one of the Dayton area tracks, but we did not. We’ve sent emails and left phone messages and we are hoping we hear soon.
We rode on and now the pleasant corn fields we were passing actually became boring. We were bordered on either side by corn for miles and miles. Because of it, we didn’t get to see much of the country side and we lost all of the shade we so enjoyed during the early part of the day. After riding 15 miles, we checked our GPS for a rest stop and found that there was nothing for another 10 miles. Our water was low but not out so we kept on riding, hoping the GPS would be wrong. It wasn’t; all there was out in the Ohio heartland was corn, corn and more corn.
We were hot, sweaty and desperate for a stop when we finally came into a small town that had a Marathon gas station just where the GPS detailed it would be. We got some Gatorade and asked to fill our water bottles with ice and water at their dispenser and was told there would be a 10 cent charge per bottle. We filled them and then sat on the sidewalk next to our bikes in the shade for a rest. We pulled out some snacks to replenish ourselves and checked the GPS to see how much further it was to our campground. Woo Hoo, only 12 miles more!
We stopped at the local grocery and picked up some dinner items. We still haven’t found our type of camp fuel and we can’t be sure how much is left in the canister, so we bought wisely. We picked up some bagels and salami, figuring we’ll have that if there isn’t enough camp fuel to make dinner. I also picked up some bananas, figuring we can have peanut butter and banana bagels for breakfast instead of oatmeal. We put our bag of goodies in my basket and headed on towards the campground.
The last 12 miles were pretty pleasant. The corn fields were replaced by working farms with cattle, goats, etc. We even saw an alpaca farm. The sun didn’t feel as brutal and the evening breezes had started. We arrived, checked in and rolled out our bedrolls in the shade for a rest before putting up the tent. Before long, I asked the Beast to grab my sleeping bag because I started cooling down and getting chilly.
Frankenbutt asked if I wanted a snack and I said sure. He pulled stuff out and was preparing it while I checked email. He arrived at my mat with a salami and mustard bagel sandwich. I ate it and realized I was actually pretty hungry. He ate his and then fixed 2 more. He brought me another and I said, “Is this dinner?” He said, “Yeah. I was going to fix the pasta but I couldn’t get the salami and bagels out of my head. So, I guess this is dinner.” Good enough for me.
I was the first one to call it a night while it was still light out. I guess my body needs some rest. Coco joined me in the tent and insisted on sleeping inside my bag with me. I leave the zipper open so she can easily get out and because I’m afraid she’s going to overheat in my down bag. I suppose she’s a “butterball” like me.