Sunday, May 4, 2014

Off to Toledo - Day #5

Day #5

Elma to Toledo

Day #5 on the bike has been officially declared “Sore Butt Day” as the riders are adjusting to being on a bike for 8 hours a day.  I cannot imagine that and am once again amazed and in awe of what they are doing. 

We woke up today to the smell of Michael’s homemade Apple-Cranberry muffins baking.  They were AMAZING!  We are going to need that recipe, Michael!  But that was not all, he also made bacon, sausage, hash browns, coffee and eggs to order.  Oh  my goodness…Bev and Michael, you spoiled us and we did not want to leave Elma. Thank you so much for your gracious hospitality.  We miss you already! 

Can you believe it is day #5 already?  That’s Crazy.  I can tell you that I am NOT going to want to leave this gang.  It is going to be SO hard to watch the rest of this ride on Facebook next week from my desk.  Believe me, I have looked over my calendar and tried to figure out if there was any way possible I could stay. 

Thank you Michael & Bev 
I spend a lot of time by the side of the road by myself just listening to the sounds of the road.  This route has taken us through so many places I would never have gone.  In fact, no one goes on these back roads unless they live there or are going to visit someone who lives there so most people miss this view of Washington.  Today we went through some backwoods areas and passed some redneck bbq’s, lots of farms, saw tons of llama - in fact we stopped at one for a rest and the nice guy, Erik,  from the homestead across the street came out to chat with us. 

 We met quite a few cyclists during the day.  Peggy rode with us for a bit…she is training for a ride around Portugal.  Oh, and I have been calling these guys bikers but apparently that is what Jax from SOA is and my guys are cyclists.  You’d think I would know that after ALL these years volunteering with people who ride bicycles.  People get slightly alarmed if you say you have some bikers coming through town. 

When we are on long stretches of the same road, which we finally had today, I get to pull ahead 4 -5 miles and stop.  While I am stopped, I open the back of the Edge and get snacks ready and then I open my laptop and try to work on this blog because I never seem to have time at the end of the day.  We are too busy unpacking the car, setting up ‘camp’, working on tomorrow’s route or using the torture wheel (more on that later.)  So, when I have five minutes I write and I listen to the ‘Sounds of the Road.’  I have heard birds, cows, horses, cars, wind through the trees, water flowing through the streams or rivers.  It is so peaceful and relaxing.  Another deer crossed the road in front of me again today.  Gonna be extremely hard to go back to a desk Tuesday.  I also pick up any trash that is laying on the side of the road where I stop.  Speaking of which, we have found some treasures on the road.  We have the Tibetan prayer flags that are tied to the bike rack on the back, a Happy Holiday hood ornament for Jerry’s car, “the Party is Here” sign and that is just the things we have picked up.

We stopped for lunch today at the Riverside Park in Centralia.  And very easily navigated through town.  We had to leapfrog a bit but it was very clear.  It makes a huge difference since Jerry has been doing the route each night.  That’s why he is the Grand Master.  His quote of the day, “I haven’t been lost for days” – so true.  Although we should have found some wood to knock on but that story is for tomorrow.

We made it to Toledo by 3:40 - our earliest time so far – and  we were graciously welcomed by Travis at the First Baptist Church and given the nursery to take over so we got moved in and settled, took turns taking showers and started some laundry.  Jerry got an early start on the route, I worked on catching up with some loose ends on lodging down the road. 

Travis suggested a Mexican food restaurant for dinner and I was a bit leery because having Mexican food in a tiny town in Washington is like eating seafood in Arizona (which I did not do for the first 5 years I lived there by the way) However, I was pleasantly surprised because I was either really hungry or that was some of the best Mexican food I have had in a long time.

My last duty before bed is maybe my favorite.  I get to use the Wheel of Torture on Shane.  Every girl’s dream!  What is a wheel of torture you ask?  It looks like a thin rolling pin but it is used for torture rather than pie crust.   I get to use it to roll out the knots on Shane’s thighs, hamstrings and calves.  I’m not gonna lie, I get a strange satisfaction when he winces.  No pain, no gain right? 

Well, it’s lights out folks,  See you down the road!


  1. We miss you Rachel! You were an awesome support driver and more importantly you are an awesome friend!

    1. Thanks Carl. I miss you guys too. So much that I took another week off and bought a plane ticket today. See you on May 17th.