Some days are harder than others

Some days are harder than others

Every day I get up early in the morning, whether I’m riding or not. Chances are, at least 6 days out of 7, that I am riding. It seems that no matter how I try, it takes 2 to 2 and a half hours to get ready. What takes so long, you might ask? First I have to walk my 2 dogs, Bodhi and Ace. Since they’re big dogs, they need a big walk. Then I usually do my exercises, as if I wasn’t going to get enough exercise bike riding. I have to make breakfast, which usually consists of an egg or 2 in a sandwich. Is this too much information? Of course, I make myself a SevenPoint2 protein shake, but that only takes a couple of minutes. And then I have to make myself a sandwich for the ride and gather all the other snacks that I take along with me, like a Larabar, an apple, nuts, and now a Clif bar. Of course I have to fill my water bottles and add my 7.2 HydroFX for water to make it alkaline. And finally I have to get dressed after checking the weather so I know what to wear. Seems like I’m worn out before I begin.

This last week has been a challenge. Up until now, we really haven’t had any trouble finding a place to set up the RV. We’ve been close to the interstate, and there are always truck stops if we can’t find a campground. Of course, now that I returned the generators that I bought so we would have air conditioning in truck stops, we’re having a hard time finding campgrounds with electricity. The generators were more trouble than they’re worth.

One of the things that have been most frustrating is that stuff is continually breaking down or not working, and I have absolutely no control over it. We’ve had our share of problems with the RV. The latest, and probably most serious was a leak in the roof. An RV dealer wanted $500 to fix it so I fixed it myself for about $5. A little silicone did the trick. I hope it holds. I’ve also had my share of problems with my bike computer, which is a simple contraption with a transmitter, receiver, and a magnet. Why doesn’t the stupid thing work? I replaced my first one and now my second one is on the fritz. I was going to buy a new one but the guy at the bike store got it working… for a day and a half. I would pull out my hair if I could grab it.

I’m so close to Virginia! I’ll be there in 2 days, and then it seems like I should only be a few days away. Just one problem. Virginia is really wide, there are no roads that go straight across, and I have to ride over the Appalachian mountains. I’ve already ridden over some really steep mountains and I’m not crazy about doing it again. I’ve heard from cyclists going the other way that the mountains are killers. Then again, they’ve been loaded down with panniers and a lot more weight than I’m carrying.

Then I remind myself why I’m doing this ride, and how lucky I am to be healthy enough and have someone supporting me with the RV. It’s all a real blessing.

I think the best thing of all is meeting people along the way. I’ve talked to some veterans, and they really appreciate what I’m doing. I’ve talked to a farmer or 2,

and they’re happy to see cyclists riding through. I’ve talked to some folks in Bowling Green, KY who are taking a stand for the LGBT community in an area that doesn’t want to talk about equality. I’ve shared with people along the way who have been receptive and agree that LGBT veterans should be acknowledged and honored. I’ve met one or 2 people who have just walked away, but no one has given me a hard time.

Now I just need to keep my head down, my bike heading east, and keep on peddling. It’s not about speed, it’s about endurance. I only have to endure for a little over 2 weeks. And then I can celebrate! Who wants to celebrate with me?

Oops… did you make it this far?  I actually finished the ride almost 2 months ago but forgot to publish this post.  Here it is, better late than never.

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