SA
 
It's been a brutal day. 34 miles into Westminster, MD. Rode all day! 7-4 with only a few stops and we only made it 34 miles. HILLS, HILLS, HILLS, all we did today was going up and down. Fast down and then up and up and up then down a little bit. We made it to a McDonalds and I was toast. Ryan had met a guy while he was out at the bar in Newark, MD who happened to live in Westminster before he went to school. He passed along a few numbers fo people to contact if we made it to this town. At the MCD's Ryan started calling people.
ALEX!!!! came to the rescue and helped us saying we could stay at his place in the back yard. We didn't know what we were walking into when we got here. Turns out the guy is the Oracle of biking, he has traveled the world. Africa, South America, name it he or his kids have cycled it. We've been keeping him up hostage all night in his house peppering him with questions.
Race Pace Bicycles is his shop 5 of them across MD
He's taking us on a tour of the world just with his stories. It's amazing, his wife fed us some wonderful food and he has sat with us and looked over maps. I feel revived this man's traveled the world, lives frugally, is clearly successful. I'm sitting in the living room with him now listening to stories about how there is no restaurants in Morraco.

He's planning to take us to the bike shop tomorrow and get us tuned up. I'm excited after such a long day not making much progress. We've planed to get ourselves down the Shenondoah Valley to the Blueridge Parkway.

It's late and i'm exhausted so this entry i'm sure is a little delirious so it's time for me to call it for the night.

From our lunch break with Shorty... to dinner with Alex a day on the road never fails to disapoint.
 

Shorty's

10/26/2009

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On the corner of a back country road we wanted to turn left a man tended a pit beef barbeque, long dreaded hair he called out  ' Try a piece it's free' You don't have to ask twice my friend! He invited us in side and told us wuite a a story about his life. Seems he is making a movie about racism in America ' Letters to Zion by Rob Fix (Spring of 10') the other simply 'Racisim in America'. He's taken us into his country store provided us with a bit of food and a computer to update the blog with.


Last night we didn't quite make the destination. We knocked on the door of farm house and asked if we could camp in the yard. A nice man named Al set us up behind a farm house under an ancient oak tree. It was beatiful, we set off early and have been peadling through the Maryland country side since.   We must take off and get back on the road but wanted to take a minute to keep ya'll posted.

Check out some of the n

 
 

At a McDonalds enjoying a McCafe 1 PM we've been biking all morning. We biked from Newtown back to Trenton to get back to where we lost the trail. Finding out that it ends right were we got lost, figures. I hit up the Trenton library and wrote turn by turn directions down all the way to Willmington, DE.  Only make a mistake once. It took a good amount of time but well worth it. The signage in PA for the bike routes is fantastic (Kudos to whomever is running that show) we didn't need the turn by turn but hell I wasn't going the wrong way again. Not having showered yet I was on a mission.
Over our coffee stop Ryan and I talked some shop about good biking technique and tried to dispel to him some wisdom from the days when "Katrina" my old Mtn. Bike and I would take pedals from Meredith Neck to Sandwhich coincedintly to hang out with Kasey and Kelly... Oh how history repeats. We both made quips about the plane ride home and I thought 'HA, day 3 and i'm already thinking about that flight. I tried to get it out of my head quickly 5 hours in a comfy seat, covering the land it just took me 60 days to do.

We biked through Tacony, PA. It is interesting to go through such rundown places on a bicycle. My travels have been fairly broad but fortunately often in luxurious hotels and beautiful destinations. When your are on the bicycle you are a part of the street. Smells and sounds take you over. Blocks change quickly in places from destitue conditions to beautiful neighborhoods. Our cities are strange like that. I was unable to get a quality camera before the trip to complete my planned photoessay I thought much about how I wanted to capture the places we pedaled through. After Philly we were hauling to try and make it to Willmington before dark. 
Chester i'm not sure if it is PA or DE was a place like i've never seen. Almost alien terrain. It runs along the river and has been completly developed into refineries, 5-6 maybe more miles worth of piping. Cooling towers stretch to the sky and at dusk the lights were all on. I thought this is what it will look like when we colonize Mars or the like. We were catching the change of shifts, traffic was headed all in one direction, out! 4 miles left to destination and I hit something in the road, big, instant rear flat!  I did my best Nascar pit crew speed tube change and we took off again. 1 mile covered, fast. Blew the tire again!!! AGHHH soo close yet so far!!!    Changed tube again at a glf and realized what ever I hit shreaded my tire and cut the rubber in half. Rendered unrideable we called Kasey for rescue. 5 minutes later we were loading bikes into the truck. THANK GOD!! Lesson 2: What to do when a tire shreds?  Note to self to find out tommorow. 

We made it to Kasey place and at everything we could find. It was great to see these girls again, they were best friends of mine growing up and we haven't excahnged much of a word in years as life has taken us all different directions. Ryan clammed up, we had a minute alone and he caught me "You didn't tell me they were beautiful" He scurried to the shower. I chuckled. The girls went out and we lazed around trying to catch up with our chores and clean up. A comfortable night and some cushion to sleep on.... I didn't fit on the couch and Ryan passed out mid sentance on the futon I had called fives on earlier so I slept on the floor on top of my mummy bag. More comfortable then the door mat and asphalt of night one. I couldn't sleep for hours, I'm always jealous at how quickly Ryan passes out and how soundly he sleeps. No more late in the day McCafe's for me.

 

Day 2

10/23/2009

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10-22

Next am we hit up a campus coffee joint (A Small World Cafe) passing out our information to everyone inside. Made plans for the day and set off. 11am by the time we were headed in right direction. Found the East Coast Greenway, a trail we later learned we could have followed all the way to Princeton. It was beautiful, a shale path that followed a canal for miles to Trenton. Were we took a wrong turn on some directions for a not so reliable character in the street. It was a beautiful day spent pedaling fast and covering lots of ground.. When I finally decided to stop and have a meal about three and check the GPS I couldn't believe my eyes... I had to check it three times! WHAT WE TOOK THE WRONG TURN for 20 plus miles. We made a V Princeton to Trenton to Washington Crossing. UGH.. read Ryans bolg for more, we crossed the Delaware and spent the night in a state park in Newtown PA.
I was defeated and very frusterated, I took space from Ryan in a local Starbuck and gained my sanity back with a good conversation with Alicia (Thank you for your rationality)  'Well let's chalk that one up as it is and move on' Ryan said and I came back from frusteration. I learned it from Mike Murray 'It is what it is'
 

Day 1

10/23/2009

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I'm keeping a hand written journal for the times when I can't get to a computer. When I do I am going to transpose it to this blog on a day by day post.

10-21-08
After a last meal and a night spent w/ Kelli and Brian we set off from the Statue of Liberty with plans to make it to Philidelphia....  We ended up getting a late start after enjoying an amazing goodbye breakfast caserole! (Thanks Kelli) 
At the park as we were loading up our bikes a man on his bike asked casually were we were headed. He was poliete and very friendly and we began telling him our story. Learning his name was Deryk he told us a little about his long rides. With out even saying anything he went to his car and retuned with a present! State maps of every east coast state we planned to bike through! What a life saver. We had grand plans to use Ryans phone and my GPS... Turns out, in our haste to pack Ryan forgot his charger and the latter is harder to keep charged then I planned. Alas we were off. Biking through Newark and Jersey City that was an adventure taking downtown roads and dodging fast traffic across a bridge definately not made for bikes.
We kept going and going. Getting out of the city it was a nice change of pace to be on smooth road. I had a message 2 dear old friends of mine were traveling south from NH and we made plans to meet in Princeton(What a beautiful place). 
Kelley and Kasey the ever inseperable treated us to a fantastic dinner after we booked it for a few solid hours in the dark. 
Almost being taken out by an 18 wheeler on my frist night.... it had to screech to a stop... then later some deer on the side of the road ran next to us that scared the hell out of us both! 
We made camp in an alleyway on Princeton campus next to the main church. See pictures, it was beautiful so we unrolled our bags and I slept on a door mat of a tool shed.    Ohhh how this adventure began. 


 

 
 
 In CT. Headed to the cityin a few minutes! holly molly wooooo
 
 
Packing up final items and my room. Leaving today for the ride to NY. I've decided I need to do this. After some serious anxiety attacks and lots of back and forth thats about killed Ryan. I've decided to go. Lately I've been feeling like less of a person than I have for some time. I was defeated by the idea that it really isn't the best idea to get on a bike and pedal for this long. Defeated that I had put my all into making it happen and well.... 


Lest we forget its what you do in life not what you thought about doing so alas I'm going to start biking. I'm calling it the clean slate ride, 60 days isn't that long and it will be life changing. I can get away from a place I curiously returned to and all willing find some happiness again. 


We head to Kelli's tonight for a last meal and then we are off in the am. Looks like we can't get out of the city from Battery Park so we might be leaving from Liberty Park. 


Follow our pics, we can keep them updated as we go. 
Blogs will try and be day today but it's tough to update from the phone. Most likely will be every few days. 


Wish us luck and if you want to join the cause. Donate now hit the yellow button!

 

Stressed

10/16/2009

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I'm in Boston spending my last few days with Alicia. I am teatering on the edge of saying "ok i'm in" to this trip. Donations have slowed to a trickle. Site traffic has tripled!!! We are getting more support from strangers on the street with this adventure than I am from my family. It blows me away how when you do a good thing other good people come out and join you.

Both Ryan and I are investing our every last penny into this trip. We are relying on a litlle help from those interested in the cause. Since our media has started to make it's way into the public we've receieved amazing emails from people around the country offering a place to stay and hot food as we make our way across the USA. The generosity of others always has such an impact on me, having come from a place where such nicities aren't given to ones own childern. It is on this mission that I am reminded the world is full of wonderfully generous people.

Help both of us make this trip and our cause a success. Donate today!!!!

My heart goes out to the people who have sent me the most wonderful stories. It is an honor to be able to help such a great cause. 



  

 
 
Just back from the bike shop. Papa Wheelies came through huge deciding that they will carry the debt for the trip till years end. 

Talk about a roller coaster of emotion. We walked in with a McCafe peace offering with the bad news  I needed to return everything from yesterday! After hearing why and were we stood, Nat chimed in with sage words "Nobody in this business makes money. It's a good life style, we are helping other people live a healthier life" That resonated with me, that is what we are doing with the fund as well.
"You are shouldering the hurdle of the trip, if my part is to shoulder this to make it happen, i'm in" Loosely quoted- 

We are back at the house as Ryan's bike is racked up. Pulling all the things we need out and packing up. 

Please help us out and donate. $.01 a mile to this journey. If every friend o

 

....

10/14/2009

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Well isn't the egg on my face!   I can't take this pedal. Went and spent all day at the shop yesterday. Ate up Nat's day. Had my bike built, looked really sick. went to pay and.....

We got a little excited and hyped up. It's like deal heat, kinda sweeps you away. There is no way I can take this pedal. We didn't raise nearly enough. We didn't raise enough money for one of us to go really but Ryan is going to do it anyway. 

I feel bad for having Papa's spend so much time building my bike out for me but it is what it is. We are about to head back there and have them get Ryan's bike all set up where it needs to be. 

ug
 

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    20 Something male on a traveling mission! Exploring this country as much as possible. Follow most of my days here and be sure to leave comments. I'll be working on and riding in a 3,500 mile bicycle ride across the USA.

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