Saturday, 4 June 2011

Day 2: Half century in the second innings

Day 2 04/06/11
58 miles Chickahominy river to Mechanicsville

Slept much better last night, woke up at about 5.30. My alarm was set for 6am anyway so decided to get up and start breaking camp.

My plan was to be on the road early whilst the temperatures were lower, and then buy some breakfast on the route. This started off fine, the route (a mixture of road and the capital trail) was lovely and smooth. And the trees that lined the route kept the sun off me nicely. Trouble is that the restaurant I planned to get breakfast at wasnt open, so I ended up going 30miles when I was hoping (based on my map) to get to the next one. I was getting pretty hungry at this point. When I got there, it was clear this place was ho longer open.
However, I saw a woman and asked if there was anywhere to get some food. To which she replied she would fix me something! My first encounter with such great hospitality. Erin returned with some bread and hummus. Her partner, Stu, then joined us and and we had a great chat for about an hour. They asked me if I had a name for my bike, which I didnt, so they suggested I name it after their dog, Whiskey! So now I can say I am riding across America on Whiskey!
Stu, Erin and Whiskey the dog

They were really nice, and wanted to put their place to use for cyclists, so they would be a good place for anyone doing the TransAm to stop off. Thanks again guys.

After this I set off with a goal of reaching Mechanicsville. This would be a roughly 50mile ride in total. The sun was getting hotter by now, and my legs were getting tired. A couple of route diversions didnt help either as they both added miles to the journey. I had to stop at a couple of petrol stations to get a drink. Also saw a car painted to look just the General Lee from Dukes of Hazard. Was so tempted to reach in and try the horn!

Eventually arrived in Mechanicsville at around 1:30, having done 58miles. Decided to treat myself to a hotel as there didnt appear to be much else around. And I needed to do a couple of small adjustments to the bike. Booked into a Holiday inn. Which means free internet, and a pool!

Had a shower, went for some lunch at an IHOP, and then got down to updating my blog. Might go for a swim in a bit!

I think today definitely set out the format Im going to try and stick to. Get out early and get the main miles in, then as it gets hotter I can take it easy. As I get fitter hopefully Ill be able to add extra miles in the afternoon, but this early my legs are still not up for it.

The other thing to do is check exactly where the accommodation is in relation to the route. And to call ahead to check availability. Have got some skype credit now, so when I have wireless I can make cheap calls. And also to plan a few days in advance in order to work out a route for a couple of days at a time.

The route tomorrow looks a bit bare, so I can either do a short day, or another long one to Mineral, which will be a little more distance than today. Apparently there is a fire station to stay in for cyclists!

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