Reporting on: Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Riding Route: From Wooster to Niles, OH
Temperature: 56 - 78 degrees/Winds: 5-15 mph
Elevation Climb: 4600 feet
Miles Ridden Today: 100 with detours!
We have six days of l-o-n-g and hard peddling behind us - and one to go! Anyone who says Ohio is flat hasn't ridden it on a bike! Today was not near as fun as it should have been. The weather was good, the scenery terrific and the company great! Oh-oh you say...here comes another "but"! You're right! The roads were the worst we've experienced the entire trip. We've had days where we had places that were tough to ride...but this was an entire day of teeth jarring bumps and holes and cracks in the roads! On top of that we had several unplanned detours. I will also tell you that our group voted to give the Ohio drivers the prize for being "Absolute Jerks" (being said nicely) to bike riders! This was unanimous, absolute, unqualified and undisputed! If there was plenty of room on the road for them to move over - they came as close to us as possible...and blew their horns, swerved in front of us - and tried to run us off the road! At one point today I decided a HOG would be a better way to travel (picture above). You'll recall I couldn't get the little boy to trade bikes with me a few days ago - and today I couldn't get the big guy to either!
Last night I received a call from my good friend David Hawkins who lives in Canton. He and his wife Wendy drove over and had dinner with me tonight. You should have seen the three of us in their little Porsche Boxster! It was a challenge - but we did it! Thank goodness the restaurant wasn't too far away! We had a great meal and a wonderful time sharing thoughts and ideas! As many of you know, David is one of the preeminent showroom designers in the nation. If you're thinking of building out a showroom - he's your man!
My roommate Champ had a "crappy day" - as he put it! When he woke up this morning his bike had a flat tire. Then a couple of miles into the ride his bike computer gave out! He was going up a hill and the chain came off...and because the computer wasn't working he got lost! To top it all off 10 miles before we arrived at the hotel he had another flat tire! He did more than 100 miles today...and they were tougher than the rest of us had! It made us all stop complaining! However, a little time in the whirlpool helped him bounce back and he's in great spirits again.
Today Bob (who had the accident yesterday) had screws put in his ankle and his leg set. We were told that it was a good thing he had his helmet on - it was completed "shredded"! He's doing much better tonight! On a good note, Willie, one of our riders, is having 6 friends join him on the ride tomorrow. It really makes it fun when that happens. I've also got two more friends joining me before the ride is over.
A little history on Niles (population 21,000): It's known to most Ohioans as the birthplace of William McKinley, the 25th President of the United States. President McKinley's death in 1901 was the result of an attack by an assassin. It shocked the nation and especially people in this area...and in 1915 the McKinley Memorial was built in downtown Niles. The facility currently houses the community's library as well as a small museum. Not much else here!
Only 9 more riding days! Where has the time gone?