Training Day 7

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Today was a good day. I had a fair amount of direct sun and partly cloudy skies. I started out about 9 AM and just took my good ole time and waited for my body to warm up. The first thing I needed was coffee. The first place I found with coffee was Starbucks. I roped my horse up to bike rack and walked into the saloon like a cowboy off the dusty trail. Not sure anyone else saw that but I did. Looked like just about everyone in there had a laptop open with their fingers dancing on the keyboards.

I walked up to the bar and asked the bartender for a whiskey. He asked, “Regular or decaf?” I gave him a strange look and just repeated whatever the first option was he mentioned. I had him put a few ice cubes in it too. It sure gets difficult with the language barrier when you’re from outta town.

He handed me my whiskey and I walked out the door with my spurs ringing with each step. I sat down next to my horse and sipped on my brew and relaxed in the shade. Life is good.

It was a good day for signs. I don’t know why I tend find the odd ones, but here’s a few.


Stopped at a bike shop somewhere in lower Venice and picked up a pair foam handle grips to help with my aching hands. They felt a lot better for a longer time but the aching was back again. It looks like I may have to regulate breaks by the aches. Ha Ha! I just made that up. It’s always good to stop and take in some liquid refreshment anyway. I really am drinking large quantities of water and Gatorade. The puzzling thing is, my frequent urination problem has seemed to vanish! Now I just have a frequent perspiration problem. Not sure the smell is any change for the good.

Today I notice the freewheels on my derailleur are super shot. They’re missing some teeth and looking kind of oblong. I stop at the next bike shop I come to. The mechanic took a look at them and broke the news to me that the owner does as little part repair as possible. There weren’t any freewheels in the store because the owner would rather sell the whole derailleur for $25 and $30 labor. Sound familiar? He did tell me where I could possibly get the parts and repair it myself but I decided to move on wished I had noticed it when I was at Tony’s Bike Shop further back.

Rode past a jogger and told her pick up the pace. She smiled and waved. No, really. It was a wave.

Got myself some shorts at Walmart. The hiker kind with all the extra Velcro pockets. Tomorrow I start wearing them. This whole time I’ve been riding in jeans. It’s time to shed the extra weight and tan them pedal pushers. Until they get tanned up I’m gonna feel like a dork. Walmart also had a Subway. I ate a good lunch and left. When I first got to Walmart I looked for a good place to park my bike. There was a kid pushing carts into the store where the carts go. I asked him if he would let me put it behind some of the carts that were in need of repair, just off to the side, and he obliged. He said he’d keep an eye on it too. As I left the store I thanked him and “greased his palm.”

If you have Google Earth there is a spot to the left, or West, of Murdock that has residential streets plotted out. There are signs with the street names on them too. The streets were paved at one time but the asphalt is now breaking up and weeds are starting to overcome them. There are no houses anywhere in this particular area. Not even a hint that any construction had started. Between all the streets are nothing but full trees. No lots or anything. I thought that might be great place to do some “Stealth camping.” But it was too early to do that so I progressed.

The best part of the whole ride today was entering Punta Gorda via the awesome bridge. Not too bad getting up it but a great fast ride down! Nice clean roadway too. This is where I’ll stay tonight. Total miles today: 34

Well, if you’ll excuse me. I think I hear the dinner bell ringing!


© Ron Wynkoop and Bike2Cloud9, 2011.

About bike2cloud9

Recently retired and going to attempt crossing the U.S. on my bicycle. Please become a sponsor or just cheer me on!

13 responses »

  1. Cathy Goretsky

    I am so enjoying this trip! Your writing is captivating and I look forward to the treat of reading what you have written each day! Godspeed!

  2. I don’t know how you do it in the heat! It’s 97F here in good old N. Illinois and I can’t stand walking from the car to the house. I’m enjoying reading about your observations and adventures!

    • Thank you Kathy. I couldn’t tell you in digits what the temps are here. I haven’t even thought about it on a scale level. The direct sun wears me down quicker than ambient heat does. But the sweat makes for natural cooling in the breeze. If I’m riding with the wind I can feel no breeze at all and that feels much warmer.

      I’m glad to hear you’re enjoying my adventure. I enjoy sharing it.

  3. Dennis 'bondo' bruno

    Enjoyed talkin’ with you this afternoon! The surf board’s got a new owner. Good to know no matter how many miles between us, always a hearty laugh. Punta gorda! What a nice place. You may hear from rhonda, from green gobblin’ soon. Told here about you and she remembered you. Said she’de check out your adventure. Im still spreadin’ the word. Lol take care “bub” (fist bump) clot ya later, bondo

  4. Hey, Ron! Pardon me if I start a little trend. I’ve been reading your blog every day, and, frankly, it’s a great read. It’s a little difficult to think of something else to say other than ‘You’re doin’ great! I’m rooting for you, man. Keep on keepin’ on!’ However, I do want you to know that I’m here and cheering you on, so from now on, when I say ‘Cheers!’, know that I mean all of the above. Anyone else here reading that also suffers from my occasional lack of creativity should do the same. Cool?


  5. Jim Sheridan

    Still here, Ron.

    I’m liking the creative variety in your writing.

    Years ago, when my knees still worked, I ran miles upon miles. When the sun is beating down on you, nothing is a better friend than a good hat. Don’t forget that.



  6. mike larocque

    Hey Rizzo,

    Do you ride at nite at all? Was thinking too, you know the fishing shirts, the long sleeve ones that are designed to cool, might be good for those murderously hot days; these things are vented up the back and will also give you some protection from the sun and most are 100% cotton so you can vent easily..they usually carry a UFP rating of about 30 and will definitely do double duty of keeping you cool and sun protection. Also, they are usually riddled with pockets and doodads and compartments that might be helpful for more storage / carrying…check cabela’s or or even walmart…thinking about you and wishing you the best!


  7. Already I find myself looking forward to the next day’s installment. Who knew you’re such a great writer! Good imagery, captivating accounts. Pedal on and thank you for allowing us to ride along!

  8. Ron ditto to what Kathleen said above about your writing. I see book in you, about your tip across the U.S.A.
    I look forward to reading about your day. Also your are posting some nice pictures. Punta gorda is a nice sea side town. Am going to start printing your day writings so all your friends at work can be updated. KEEP THE WIND AT YOUR BACK.


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