Sunday, July 27, 2008

Goodness Gracious

What does that expression even mean? Noun followed by adjective? Come on.

Regardless, we have been impressing ourselves with our own abilities. That's right. From Carmel, where we had a great time with Arjun and Sandy the dog (who only moved once the entire day, to eat our sandwiches), we rode onward towards Ohio, reaching the border in the early afternoon. We rolled on to Piqua just pushing us over 3,000 miles or ~5,000 kilometers and had a lovely stay at the Knight's Inn. And by lovely, we mean dirty and 9 hours too long.
We had heard that Ohio gets progressively hillier as you head east, so we decided to throw in some long miles on the west side since they may end up being our last flat days of the trip. 115 to Piqua was followed by 115 to Apple Valley (outside of Mont Vernon- home of Kenyon College). We ended up camping in Apple Valley, since it was the Knox County Fair, which filled up all the hotels in Mt. Vernon. We pitched our tents in the fading light of day, only to be abruptly rained on during dinner. Per usual we were in bed before dark and were sleeping soundly until the police woke us up at 10pm demanding our camping permits. (please note, this is the second time on the trip police have awoken us). Russ motioned to our neighbors stating that they were sleeping with the permits, which earned us a get out of jail free card.

The weather and drivers here in Ohio are definitively east coast. The temperature is cooler, and clouds roll through every day; there is noticeable humidity, but mild in comparison to the tropical rain forest we battled in Missouri. We love that, but the drivers on the other hand are terrible and bound to get worse. As is typical of east coasters, they pretend they cannot see us and come within inches of our handlebars, and on top of it, they don't slow down. The people here are also more guarded and not as eager to invite five stinky bikers into their homes for the night.

All of these rules are an exception tonight however in North Canton, Ohio, where we are graciously being hosted by Sarah's cousin once removed (now that's technical). Having cranked out 2 long days, today was only 80 miles giving us plenty of time to enjoy the scenery in Amish/Mennonite country of Holmes County, where to our dismay every bakery, produce stand, and dried meat shop was closed since today is Sunday. The riding however was shaded and spectacular! Note the extremely wide shoulder on Amish Country roads, presumably for the buggies!

Since there was little to snack upon in the early morning hours, we made a pit stop at a local Creamery, where everyone ordered ice cream. Russ and Dan decided to "super size me" with the monster size shake- why a styrofoam cup exists in this size is beyond comprehension...

Russ tried to figure out how so much volume can fit into the stomach, but left without an answer.

We finally rolled into Canton around 3:30, and if any of you know anything about Canton, OH, you know it is the home to the pro football hall of fame. Having lost Dan and Alex for 3 hours to such an enticing attraction, Russ, Jen, and Sarah headed instead to the alluring air conditioned home with hosts, food, and showers. Dan declares that this visit was certainly a capstone experience and that he will probably blow up that picture of him next to Dan Marino, so he can hang it on his wall back at 5S as a poster. (Please note Dan Marino was not actually present for the picture.)

Everyone is gathered around the dinner table, so it is time to eat (again). Only 7 days of riding remain. How the miles add up.....


Joel said...

Daniel: always a true dolphins fan!

Drew Raissis said...

Russ, your scuzziness has reached a new level with that milkshake photo, and I want you to know that I'm proud of you. Also, speaking of pitching a tent, how is everyone's pudendal nerve doing? Keep it up (hopefully)!

Sarah said...

drew, of course they can "point and shoot" -- look at all the photos they've taken