Monday, September 7, 2009

Day 40 - Geneva on the Lake, OH to Barcelona, NY - 75 miles


Like the stacks of pancakes I’ve been devouring on this trip, doughnuts have been consumed at unhealthy levels. So, of course we had to stop at the famous Madsen Donuts on our way out of town to grab a handful of tasty calorie bombs.

We quickly made our way over the Pennsylvania border and were cruising along until PSSSSSSSSSSSTT. Uh oh! It was the sound I had been dreading ever since I had started looking for an open bike shop where I might be able to find a new rear tire. My tire had blown and we were over 20 miles from Erie, PA and the nearest bike shop that MIGHT be open on this Labor Day. As luck would have it, we were in the middle of nowhere – which just so happened to be the location of the
Elk Creek Sports Store/gas station and Dan, the benevolent owner, didn’t even wait for us to ask for help. Once he heard what happened, he made a couple of phone calls and found an open shop in Erie – “You can throw your bikes in the back of the truck and I’ll bring you down there.” Wow! Experiences like this should not surprise me by now, but they still do. The people of America have been so incredibly kind, generous, caring and helpful – it’s just awesome!

After getting a new tire and some grub, we continued on towards the New York border. Though, I knew it was coming, the sight of the “Welcome to New York” sign sent a chill up my spine. I had actually made it from Oregon to New York. Cool! I rode that high all the way to Barcelona, NY where we found a nice park with a picnic shelter that was sure to protect us from the rains that still looked imminent. To be sure the recently seen black bear didn’t interrupt our sleep, we were let into the enclosed picnic area by Chuck, the guy that came around to lock everything up. Nice guy, that Chuck.

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