Saturday and Sunday August 29 & 30
Saturday was a day of rest for Team Jackson as travel arrangements needed to be finalized and other loose ends tied up as well. Our hosts Bob and Donna were up around 7:00 as was I. Bob made blueberry pancakes and scrambled eggs for breakfast. Bob’s Donna was the first to leave for the day as she had to be at work by 8:00. Bob left by 8:30. While Bob and Donna were at work, I bought airline tickets for the return trip to Washington and sent off some e-mails. The blog was updated and a bunch more pictures added as well. A list was developed of things that we needed before our flight. The most important was a large duffel that we can cram a bunch of our stuff into for the flight. A pair of shoes for Lewis was also right up there. And a tube of toothpaste. And some more gatorade. Gotta have gatorade. We left to run errands just as Donna was returning home from work around 2:00. The bikes were utilized to get up to the other end of Charlottesville where the Walmart was situated.
The ride was just as bit hairy as the 2 lane road with no shoulders had lots of traffic. We held up traffic multiple times as vehicles couldn’t get around us as cars were constantly coming from the opposite direction. But nobody got angry and shouted obscenties and nobody threw anything at us. I think they all knew that I am a native! Yep, born in Virginia I am. The Walmart ended up being on a busy busy road that had 4 lanes of traffic in each direction. Our duffel was found first. Good deal, $16 for one that actually collapses and has wheelies on it. We should be able to fit the tent and a couple sleeping bags and some of the panniers in this. A pair of shoes for Lewis was another purchase that came off without a hitch. This was the third pair of shoes that we’ve purchased for him since we left. He is murder on shoes. Some gatorade 32oz bottles for a buck were next on the list. These same bottles typically cost betrween 2 and 3 dollars in the minimarts that we frequent during the day so buying 4 of these is a great deal!
We left Walmart and began our return trip to the home of Bob and Donna. We hadn’t gone a mile from Walmart when the skies opened up and it poured. And it poured. We pulled into a strip mall that had a Krogers so I bought some wine to go with the spaghetti dinner that Donna was making tonight. And since I don’t happen to like wine, I bought some beer too! Now the bikes have been seriously overloaded but we’ve only got another 5 miles to ride. We made it back without incident and relaxed for the remainder of the day. We visited with Bob and Donna for the rest of the evening while Lewis and Grace watched TV down in the basement. Total miles ridden: 12
Sunday morning was much like Saturday but this day we would be riding off. It was oatmeal today. And then we were off. It actually took a little longer than that but we did pull away around 9:00. It was such a treat to spend 2 nights at the home of Bob and Donna. Thank you Bob and Donna and again, thank you!
Today Lewis was able to wear a shoe on his damaged foot. It has been exactly a week since the foot injury and now with 3 easy days of cycling left, he has the use of both feet again. Pedaling away from Charlottesville, we stopped at Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson. He wasn’t there so we pedaled on. Actually we found out that like so many other sights, you have to pay money to get close enough to see it. We turned around and pedaled on. Just a mile down the road we stopped at Jefferson Vineyards. There weren’t any fees for a tour here so we stopped and took the tour. Tom wasn’t here either. We pedaled on. Today’s weather was some of the best we’ve had on this ride. Low 80’s and lower humidity. Partly cloudy.
We rode a total of 55 miles today. Ended up in the town of Mineral Virginia by 5:00. Some groceries were purchased and then we headed for the volunteer fire station. We would be camping behind it and would be using the showers. I’m getting a little tired of writing these entries. They are all sounding alike.
We’ve all showered and had our dinner. I’m sitting in the Kitchen/TV room of the fire house writing this. Lewis is watching The Simpsons. Donna is writing in her journal. This was a relaxing day and just how I would have planned the final days to be. We’ve come across several cyclists who have been forced to do some superhuman feats to complete their trips. Ours is just the opposite. The hard work was done last week and the previous two and a half months. Now we just take it easy. Couldn’t be better. But you know what? Thoughts of work have been slippling back into my mind. I’m wondering if I’ll remember how to analyze samples after almost 100 days off. Have to wait and see!