The End Is Near

I am writing this at 2am on Friday morning — wide awake. Yesterday’s ride was tough on many levels, which I’ll describe briefly, but it’s the realization that I failed to get my “day bag” that has me mildly panicked. My “day bag” contains my car and house keys. Hopefully by the time you read his it will once again be in my possession.

Yesterday’s Ride
With the thought of Smuggler’s Notch facing us we all reticently headed out from the Trapp Resort. As we left I was thankful that I didn’t chose to wear my Deutschland jersey yesterday. The climb was tough, and for me became literally impossible when, 1/5th of a mile from the apex the chain on my bike broke. I walked up the remaining climb and the support car which was positioned there was able to remove a link and get me back on the road. The irony of my mechanical was that I chose to wear my chainlink cycling socks yesterday. I wish that I had taken a photo of my feet next to my broken chain.

Here’s the map to the point of chain breakage:
Vermont Day #5 (part 1)
9.6 miles, I stopped recording here since I wasn’t sure that I would be riding any further

With a repaired chain I rejoined the chase, eventually catching up a few miles before ou scheduled stop for lunch at mile 29. As the heat continued to increase my health improved and my riding became much better; I was crushing it (for me). Thirty miles later we took the Vermont Bike Ferry, across a twenty-yard gap in the rails-to-trail path that lead to Burlington. I was the first one to the Foam Brewery in Burlington.

Here’s the map from Smuggler’s Notch to Burlington:
Vermont Day #5 (part 2)
56.4 miles

There was some confusion as to which van held my “day bag”, and I stupidly rode off to visit a few more breweries thinking that I’d get it before dinner. Obviously I was wrong. Then, I had to help my roommate back to outperform room after dinner and after talking to him for awhile I fell asleep.

Until now, it’s now 3am.

Even with my mechanical my day wasn’t the most notable. Two of our riders wrecked independently, one of which took a ride to a local hospital; both seem to be fine.

ITP Flickr Pic
“Before Smuggler’s Notch Got Really Hard” (Stowe, Vermont, United States)
Before Smuggler's Notch Got Really Hard
Taken after what I thought was a tough part of the climb. The gondola rides, which are just out of view to my left, were an indication of how wrong I was.

“A Vermont Winery” (Cambridge, Vermont, United States)
A Vermont Winery
Due to a route change required thanks to a full road closure, our lunch was held at this winery instead of a brewery. The one glass of red that I had was good, if not a bit pricey at $9.

“Who You Calling A Cow?” (Cambridge, Vermont, United States)
Who You Calling A Cow?
Perhaps my favorite photo from this trip. These cows were so sweet, happily chewing grass and plants for their lunch.

It’s A Small World
I found out yesterday that one of my riding companions knows one of my college roommates; they both work at Sandia Labs in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Weird.

I saw hash marks around Burlington yesterday. Burlington hashes on Wednesday nights, so I was literally a day late.

On To The End
Today is the final day of the tour. Today we ride a ferry from Burlington over to New York, then down toward Charlotte, and finally ferry back to Vermont. Unless it’s raining, at which point I may walk over to the Burlington Hostel and try to check in, instead of riding.

At the time of this writing there is a 100% chance of rain in Burlington for Saturday, and I fly home super early on Sunday. Hopefully I will have keys in hand when I get back to East Atlanta and can start putting my life back in order.

Cheers,
Paulie [burlington/vt]

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9 Responses to The End Is Near

  1. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Crisis averted! I have “day bag” with keys inside back in my possession. Whew!

  2. bob says:

    Glad you found your bag, I know you had to be more concerned about it than you indicated here. I know I would be, I hate mis-placing or losing my stuff.

    Looks like your trip was fun as hell, we should get together some time to hear your stories.

  3. steve says:

    Glad the broke chain only caused a little walk. That’s an easy crash sometimes. Funny how small the world can be sometimes. How many people on the tour? And someone knows a college friend? Wierde indeed.

    Debbie had an early conference call so we’re at the cafe already. After some breakfast and chores, I’ll get out on my bike for a bit.

    Who’s riding this weekend?

    -FP

  4. Barb says:

    We soooooo need ot get on the bikes, but probbly not this weekend. I’m not sure what is on the agenda with the family.

    Allan went with everyone to the Tellus Science museum in Carterville yesterday, then got “released” for the night, so we spent a quiet night at home alone.

    Besides that, work is crazy, week 1 of 3 with Megan on vacation is almost over, and Bonnie has no idea what is going on with her life work wise, once they get the tumor treatment plan & chemo & all that stuff scheduled, she will know if she can come back to work at all. At least I get paid for my overtime hours.

  5. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Current Status: on a ferry headed to New York.

    Agreed Steve, I was fortunate to clip out in time.

    We’ve had rain this morning, but clear skies ahead for the next few hours.

    My bike needs some attention from Master Mechanic Allan when I get home. Duing my last ride in Atlanta I heard some unwanted sounds.

  6. Barb says:

    Once everyone leaves Monday -life will go back to normal. We should be around most evenings, except that every 3rd day when he’s working.

  7. Stacy says:

    My cows! 🙂

  8. alisson says:

    Very nice Paul, you look to be in great shape.
    Looking forward to riding with you when you get back.

  9. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Thanks. Will have to get my bike tuned up, and then will let you know when my legs are ready again.

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