Pastor Dee’s Bicycle Trip 2019 Day # 5

Notice the sleeping body in the lawn chair😀! In the picture. Tired boy!

We have now pedaled 288 miles give or take few, we will just round it off to 300 miles with 1,700 to go. We are camped in Vale, Oregon and tomorrow we will be at Mundo Hot Springs near Cambridge, Idaho, and we will be there 2 days as we take a rest day on Sunday. So far it has been a great trip with not to many of my major hates having happed so far. I think you know what those are, “The Seven Things I Hate on Bicycle trips”. (1) bugs of all kinds; mosquitos in camp are super annoying, yellow jackets going down your shirt, up your shorts or in your mouth are always a near death experience especially if you are barreling down a hill at 35 mph, and black flies, deer flies, or horse flies bite hard and they can fly faster than I can pedal, and when you try and swat them while riding the cars following behind will be sure to honk when you swerve unexpectedly out in the road, especially when they bite you on the ankles, back, or butt. (2) Rumble strips are a very close second. One millisecond riding on them shakes all your teeth loose and every bolt on your bicycle. I am convinced that the engineers who tell construction people how to make them and where to place them on the road have a deep loathing for bicycle riders. They often are put less than 12 inches from the edge of the pavement, and if you attempt to ride in that narrow smooth place you run the risk of running off the road and once your front tire hits that loose gravel it is road rash supreme. So if you ride on the other side of the rumble strips the cars that go by yell, swear, salute rudely, and honk their horn at you, having no clue why we are riding on the road side of the white line. But I wave politely, smile, and yell, ‘have a good day, Jesus loves you”. (3) Rain, it isn’t so much the rain as it is the huge wave of water that buries you when a truck passes by, and setting camp up in the rain or taking it down is a pain, but I am not complaining, just stating the facts, mam. (4) Grumpy campground hosts are a terrible way to end a long day in the saddle slaving away up steep hills in the blazing hot heat. We try to tell them that our tents are super small, miniature even, and that we can easily fit them next to the RV or at least on one tent sight, but no, that is against the rules, so we have to rent 2 sights and another one for the RV, and then when I suggest, politely of course, that, that is highway robbery, they act like I am depriving their grandkids of their college education. (5) Rude, stupid, and/or careless drivers are a major distraction while riding along enjoying the scenery and your thoughts. The worst ones are those who must think that if they clear you by 1 inch they are doing good. It is illegal to pass a bicycle when there is a car in the oncoming lane so that there are 2 cars and me on the bicycle together, doesn’t leave much room for error, but cars do it all the time. It is especially bad when one of the vehicles is a truck or motor home, and if both are, I hug the shoulder and pray. The rudest of the rude are those in big pickup trucks who have really loud horns and lay on them when they get right next to you. I pray for them that they won’t make it to the next rest stop before an awful case of diarrhea hits. (6) Dogs that chase you are a pest, but most just bark and chase me for a little bit, some make me break into a sweat pedaling hard enough to outrun them. So far I have not got bitten, but some have come close. And last but not least is (7) “chip seal” especially when they use gravel the size of baseballs, or so it seems, as you ride on it. Some “chip seal” is just about as bad as rumble strips, but you can’t get away from it. Cliff and Kathy ride in the road on the smoother part where the car tires have flattened the gravel down a bit, keeping an eye on their rear view mirror and then dart to the side of the rode when they see a car coming. That totally ruins my ability to enjoy the scenery as I watch for cars, trucks, and RV’s sneaking up behind me so I stay over on the rough pavement. There are others on my growing list of things I hate while bicycling but I will end here so that you don’t think I am grumbling.

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