Back to Day 14

Sorry we didn’t post last night – we had no WiFi at the Peach Bottom Inn, and Dana was getting too cranky to deal with it.

Yesterday, 11:30 AM

500 miles down, 1900 to go. Only 100 hilly miles left. I will celebrate when there are zero hilly miles left. For now, I will just keep slogging up the hills. Meanwhile, check out our awesome system for drying wet panniers in cheap hotel rooms:

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We started the day hiking up Chique’s. Dana said he could have ridden it. He should have ridden it. I wasn’t going to ride it, no way, no how. Then we came down the other side and into Columbia.

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We figured there would be a Laundromat in Columbia, but we didn’t see any on Google Maps, so we rode on into Wrightsville, across the Susquehanna river. I apologize for the fact that pretty much all of Dana’s pictures have my back/butt in them.

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Dana found a bike shop and bought gloves, then we walked up another hill, then down again, to the River Town diner. Nutella stuffed French toast. Yum.

We are now sitting in a laundromat behind the diner. The soap machine is older than time and ate my freakin’ quarters, but on the plus side dryer #8 runs forever, a good thing to note if you ever plan to come here. And the ancient machine had bleach, so tonight I will wash out our water bottles. This is a nice laundromat, but it’s really reminding me of why I love owning my own washer and dryer. If nothing else, they do not eat my quarters.  (Oh look, a picture of not my butt/back, but still me. Sorry.)

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6:30 PM

So at one point today, we’re climbing up yet another hill – I’m actually riding this one, feeling slightly less demoralized for a moment – and my phone rings. I know I shouldn’t jump every time a phone rings, but I do. Perhaps it’s a habit I learned back before answering machines and redial and cell phones. Or perhaps it’s because I assume it’s the kids, and maybe they’re in trouble. (Or they can’t find chicken in the supermarket, or they don’t know how to use the dishwasher, or they lost their cell phone at Time to Clay). Nonetheless, I worry.

So I got off the bike and answered the f–ing phone, and I heard a perky, sunshine-y voice say “Hi, my name is Judy with a very important message about your credit card. Do not hang up. We want to help you lower your monthly payments and interest rates.” I was sorely tempted to chuck the cell phone far into the amber waves of grain, but the phone is useful. If I had gotten my hands on Judy at that moment, however, she most assuredly would have been chucked.

Then, a little later, we saw two women riding the ACA the other direction. They looked to be about our kids’ age, which caused Dana to mutter “Wow, our kids really are failures, aren’t they?” Not only are they riding from South Carolina to Maine, but one of them had made her own saddle bags out of bungee cords and Home Depot buckets. Dana muttered for quite a while after he saw that.

We saw our first and only Amish buggy today, and we got chased by some Amish kids as we passed their farm. I’m sorry to say that a 4 year old Amish girl can run up a hill faster than I can bike it.

Along our path, we saw this table of free stuff, which made me terribly homesick for PHA. I considered taking the cow butter dish and dragging it with me to Florida, but Dana give me the dope slap look usually reserved for Bill.

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Along the way we ate mulberries from a tree…

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and briefly considered buying another kind of bike…

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Dana had looked at the maps and said there was a grocery store in York Furnace, and boy were we looking forward to York Furnace. Dana was almost out of water, I was almost out of Gatorade, and for some reason I was craving liverwurst. But then we kept riding and riding, until it became depressingly obvious that we had missed York Furnace and it’s promised grocery store. HOW COULD WE MISS AN ENTIRE TOWN???? So we kept riding, hungry and thirsty and uphill, to Airville, where we went into the Fire Department and begged some water from an EMT. He told us that the nearest services were in Delta, which is where our motel is, which was still 10 miles from Airville. Luckily, most of those miles were downhill.

I was very excited to find the grocery store in Delta, because I was still craving liverwurst, but on our way into town we passed an ice cream stand, and our bikes were just drawn to it. The ice cream was great and a much needed treat, but I definitely see liverwurst in my near future.

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So we’re here at the Peach Bottom Inn, just had a drink with David and are sitting down to dinner. Funny how everyone at the bar asked “Why are you here? You realize you’re nowhere, right?” It seems the ACA routes you through lots of scenic beauty (think hills), but not necessarily through places that are “somewhere”.

9 AM

Having breakfast at the Delta Family Diner. It’s Father’s Day, so the place is hopping. About to start our ride to Cockeysville, MD to visit our friend Mike. We are going off route, which will shorten our hilly day and bring us closer to Mike’s house. Tomorrow will be a rest day in Cockeysville. Dana thinks a rest day will help our muscles strengthen so we stop sucking so much. I think I’m still going to suck, but a rest day sure sounds good.

On to Day 16

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