Saturday, July 26, 2008

Tempus Fugit - Morton, MS

Tempus fugit

Time flies when you’re having fun - and we are. Just yesterday we were celebrating being east of the Mississippi River. Tomorrow will be our last night in Mississippi. Tempus fugit.

Today was not at all flat, as was yesterday – we climbed over 3,000 feet. But 13 miles, at least, were flat, pastoral, peaceful, historical and all around very enjoyable – we got to bike 13 miles of the Natchez Trace Parkway. (Turns out we could have stayed on it even longer, but we didn’t find that out until later – that’s why they call it the “inaugural” bicycle “adventure”). The Natchez Trace is the old trail where boatmen who had sold their goods and dismantled their boats in Natchez, MS, would walk back north since they could not boat upstream until steamboats were invented.

Anyway, we are no longer in Vicksburg with its historic downtown that has free wifi; we are in rural Morton, where dinner conversation turns to squirrel hunting and the “local” church is 11 miles from “downtown” (never fear, Brother Bobo was only too happy to transport us and our bikes in his pickup truck).

Along the way, we saw a VW graveyard that no one seemed to have time to take a picture of (tempus fugit). And we had 5 flats – Doug – 2, Dani – 2, and Nate (yes, Nate!) got his very first flat. I had contemplated mentioning in the blog that one of us still hadn’t had a flat and even mentioned it to Nate, so I probably jinxed him. Sorry, Nate. Ryan had 2 flats yesterday and I had one the day before. I’m probably missing some. I’ve decided having a flat on a road bike is like noticing your shoe lace is untied: you bend over, fix it and go on your way without giving it another thought – the flat just takes a little longer to fix.

It tried to rain on some of us. With 3 of us it succeeded. We heard thunder once, but we waited out the shower and all were able reach our rendezvous point in Morton – a Sonic drive-in – at happy hour, no less (half price for selected soft drinks).

Once at the Branch Baptist Church, Brother Bobo and his wife Stacy had prepared air mattresses for all of us, allowed us to use the shower in their home, and provided one of the tastiest meals we’ve had on our trip, prepared by “a few” of their members – the leftovers would probably have fed a few dozen hungry souls.

To top it off, they got up before we did (5am) and served us scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon and biscuits. They could not have been more helpful or attentive. Thanks!

I thought it might be time for some updated statistics, so here they are:

Total miles biked: 2,663
Average miles per day: still 78
Total feet climbed: 84,709!

Miles down / to go: 2663 / 637 – 80% finished
States down / to go: 8 / 3 – after tomorrow it will be 9 / 2
Weeks down / to go: 6 / 2 - 75% finished
Biking days remaining: 11 – 3 averaging 101 miles and 8 averaging 43 miles

Total flats: too many to remember

I could tell you more about today, but that would actually be tomorrow from the point of view of this post. Because there was no wifi or cellphone connection to the internet in Morton, I'm posting this in Meridian "tomorrow".

Tempus fugit


Linda S said...

thanks for the post, Tony - and for the stats (love them!) and "tempus fugit" is a phrase we would all do well to remember. It's heart warming to hear about the hospitality you guys are getting all across the country.

keep on pedaling...

auntie "m" said...

Loved reading your blog entry. You guys have been so blessed to receive such great warmth and hospitality along the way---not to mention the mouthwatering meals strangers have lovingly prepared for you. So great!

Hard to believe you've "only" got 2states and 2 weeks to go!

Rock on!!

Auntie "M"

Ruth said...

First flat for Nate? I've been reluctant to ask. Bummer! Well. at least now you can relax and not worry about it, kind of like that first nick on a new car. Still, the incredible peaople and the beauty of this country continue to amaze!
Keep the rubber side down!
Ruth (Nate's Mom)