There is nothing quite like waking up every morning and the only item in your day-plan is to ride your bike. No checking emails (partly thanks to no internet) to see who may be knocking on your virtual door, no questions on what to do with your time, no coffee to jump start your brain. After five days of bicycle touring, there appears to be some slack in my hoidy-toidy veggie organic food diet. We have run out wild rice and corn, and in it’s place are day-old sandwich leftovers for breakfast, pretzels, chips, cliff bars and just about anything we can get our hands on. The switch from hoidy-toidy to anything-goes happened somewhere around day 3 and we put up no resistance to the change.
We got an early jump on today’s ride and Jill and I were pedaling in a perfect synced cadence along the remaining coastline of southern Maine. I’ve trimmed my technology gadgets to one device – a smartphone for GPS. Gone is the Garmin Nuvi. The Nuvi hasn’t found a satellite in rural Maine for nearly 300 miles, and I didn’t have any expectations for is use today. By removing the Nuvi from my gear – opened up room for more food. I stuffed a partially eaten tuna sammie in my bag. 5 days ago I likely would have considered a leftover tuna sammie on a soggy sub roll gross. Let alone taking it along for a bike ride. Today, I was looking forward to this treat. It will likely be gone within the first 15 miles.
Riding your bicycle while the bulk of humanity is still sleeping yields fabulous rewards. There is barely any traffic on the roads, making it easy to stop anytime for photo opportunities. While we missed the sunrise, the early dawn in on a clear sunny day left us with our heads turned east (i.e. not always watching the road!), staring at the ocean shoreline, and inhaling the salty sea breezes fused with scents from spruce and balsam firs. The early temperatures were in the low 60’s with no humidity – another perfect day of riding. I could easily get used to summers in Maine.
The first 20 miles of our ride was magical. Not a stitch of traffic. Majestic views. A quiet that is interrupted only by the purr of your chain. We then found ourselves in the midst of rush hour traffic along Route 1 – however we have riding in busy traffic down to a science. We ride skinny in our 2 person draft-line, hugging the shoulder, with the front rider navigating forward movement avoiding potholes and the back rider keeping a third eye on cars coming up from behind. Soon we left the rush of humanity, to return to roadways with a quiet charm and more rugged shoreline with views that could only be inhaled.
The rest of the ride moved between sections of peaceful low volume roads to busy “Main Streets”. We finished our ride, racking up the miles, burning up our glutes and quads, smiling from ear-to-ear and handing out high fives like candy. With today’s ride complete, we jump in our SAG wagon for a quick bypass around Boston, MA – and will resume our bike touring tomorrow from Newport RI. Saaa-weet.