Day 2: Saint Augustine to Florahome or "where you puttin the gas on that thang?"

Today was a good day. The weather was sunny and threatening 80 degrees, though a steady northeast breeze kept me cool, much in the way it did yesterday, causing me not to feel how rapidly my arms were turning into lobsters with bad tan lines. But here I lie, in my tent in Etoniah Creek State Forest, just outside Florahome, FL. I'm rogue camping since the gate was closed and locked. Shhh, don't tell. And don't tell the fire ants I have holes in my tent either. Much to my dismay, I realized I did not pack a lighter, so no hot food for me tonight. But fresh strawberries, trail mix, a giant tomato, and wheat thins should hold me over until the morning when I will feast on....the same thing again. Darn.

After a delicious pirate pancakes breakfast with pure cane syrup (tastes like molasses but different), I moseyed my way west 63 miles to where I now relax horizontally, vertically, really any which way but sitting. My favorite part of today was pulling into the gas station just before heading to the forest to fill up my fuel bottle for my stove. As I was chuckling to myself and reveling in the humor of the situation a man in the passenger side of the car that has just pulls in rolls down the window and says, "where you puttin the gas on that thing?!" I laughed and showed him my fuel bottle. Another gentleman at the food shop asked me if I was rich to be able to afford this trip. I said quite the opposite, this trip is going to break me. He was appalled at such an undertaking. And another woman and fellow cyclist at the dollar store in Hastings offered me her home for the night, though sadly I was only 30 miles in at the time and had much more ground to cover yet.

I forgot to mention yesterday the tally of how many times I've been shouted at from moving vehicles. I never can tell what they're saying as they zoom past but so far I have a school bus, an old cavalier, a civic, and one man on the sidewalk, which I did hear, and he will go on the "hey baby, where you goin?" list, which shall remain separate from the moving car list. I also tallied my first dog chase sprint today, though I don't think his heart was in it as much as mine. Today was also a milestone in clipless pedal related falls. In Hastings I was turning around on the sidewalk, not moving at all, and the wind blew me over towards the side that didn't have the free foot! I also fell twice more on the sandy road in this forest. Believe it or not, you can't ride a fully loaded touring bike through a sand pit.

Aside from news of silly things, overall the trip is going well so far. One of the things I'm having trouble with is drinking enough water. I didn't feel the urge to pee once today. Or yesterday. Ruh roh. Tomorrow I will do better. Difficult for me also is taking frequent breaks to boost my endurance. I find I never want to stop and I pay for it at the end of the day. But otherwise, truckin on the trucker is good. But I'll be glad when my sit bones toughen up.

This would be a good time for some more listing I reckon. But my bike computer is outside and it's so nice laying down so I will just have to guess on the stats.
Miles ridden today: 63
Total miles ridden: 121
Average speed today: 13.4
Max speed: 22.8 - can you guess when this was?? Postcard to the winner
Weather: partly cloudy, high 70s, sometimes low 80s
Things that hurt: bum, knees (only at the end of the day) sunburn
Terrain: flat to gentle slopes, so gentle you don't even realize you're going uphill until you're slowing down and there's no headwind
Farmland: check
Temptation to steal crops: severe
Bodies of water crossed: St. John River
Stinkage (scale of roses to baby vomit): rotten tomato
Morale:'good when blood sugar is adequate, and I've been pretty good about eating often

Well kiddie, it's dark now and, yes, it's only 7:00, but, well, there's no beer and I could use the rest anyway. Take care of yourselves. I'll try to post some photos after this but I'm off the network and it might just be too slow.

Until tomorrow,


  1. I'll bet that you hit 22 MPH with that canine on your rear rim! Box 1212 for that nifty postcard! Grin...

  2. I love your blog already! Keep it up. Curse that Zieak for stealing my postcard opportunity... alright, i take that back. Zieak is a nice young man. I never should have cursed him. Drink water!

  3. One postcard comin right up for Mr. Zieak! Don't worry, Orin, I'll send you one too! Shoot me your box number.