Back to Day 45

7 PM

At happy hour at our hotel in West Palm Beach. Waiting for my aunt to come over, so she can drive us to her birthday dinner. Sometimes not having a car is awkward.

So last night, after dinner, we’re going back to our room, I press the elevator button, and Dana asks “What are you doing? That’s the wrong elevator.” And when I asked why, he replied “Because our room is on the first floor.”

We’ve been in too many hotel rooms. (Ahh, first world problems!)

This morning, as promised, we crossed back over the Indian River, but this time we were on a double bridge, so we also crossed over the Indian River Lagoon. I did not take pictures. You can recycle a previous picture if you’d like.

We rode down this little side street where the mangrove trees form an arch over the road. If I ever have to live in Florida, I want to live right here.


Or here. Here is good too.


And we saw these birds wading in a brook. Florida has great birds, and these were actually willing to pose for a picture.


And we saw what Dana calls a blue palm tree. I’m sure it has a real name, but I still thought it was cool


Then we rode for a while, and crossed over the water a few more times. In fact, we crossed 3 drawbridges, all of which had that awesome metal grate that cyclists are so fond of.

Our first planned stop for the day was supposed to be Juno Beach, to visit David. We thought it was 20 miles from Stuart, but surprise! it was 31 miles. Why is it that those distance discrepancies never go in our favor? Meanwhile, it started raining – which actually changed the way the Intracoastal Waterway looked, so I took another picture.


Then it really started raining, then I rode through a puddle, then I got another freakin’ flat tire. Dana offered to fix it – we were already running late, and my tire-changing talents are somewhat worse than my hill-climbing talents, so it just made sense.


So he changed the tube, then I rode another 10 yards, and it was clear there was a problem, so we stopped. There was actually a cut in the tire itself – so he changed the tire. Then we kept riding, and it stopped raining, but we were really late getting to David’s.

David offered us cold drinks – we were thinking Coke, he was thinking vodka – and we had a lovely visit at his house, eating really good cheese and crackers, sipping vodka and grapefruit juice, and talking about life.


Then we rode another 10 miles to Palm Beach, which took us through some sketchy areas, although we did see this wonderfully retro Dunkin’ Donuts sign.


15 miles into our 10 mile ride we found a hotel, but it was booked up, so they called another hotel for us, and they had a room, so we rode 15 minutes more, but the second hotel said they hadn’t saved the room for us. Dana walked away to look for another hotel, but I had a little hissy fit and they found us a room. One of the few times on this trip where I was more useful than Dana.

11 PM

Just returned from dinner with my Aunt Elaine. She took us to City Place, which is a huge outdoor mall in Palm Beach. We had Italian food at Brio, which was delicious, and we shared her birthday dessert.


After dinner we walked around for a while, then got back to her car with only 9 minutes on the meter. No ticket! Yippee! But seriously, it was a lovely evening, and it was nice to spend time with family. Tomorrow we will visit more family – my cousin Fred and his wife, Dorothy, in Boca Raton. On the way there we will ride past some of the famous, fancy beaches that I’ve always heard about but never seen.

On to Day 47