Sunday, June 30, 2013

Resting in Natchez with the Landers family ...

Last time I posted Mitts and I were at the Natchez library looking up places to stay the night turns out the IT guy Patrick who was helping me upload some photos ended up letting us camp out at his place. We ended up staying with him and his family for two nights including my birthday. This was a much needed rest for my bum and a good opportunity for us to get our supplies organised for the Natchez trace camping portion of our trip which will commence today.

As well as organisational stuff we were taken on a tour by Patrick and his wife Allyson to see some beautiful antebellum homes and learn some history of the area. We were also lucky enough to be treated to a birthday BBQ and a backyard fire for my birthday night.

Natchez was meant to be just a supplies stop but it ended up being so much more thanks to the generosity of Patrick and his family. Thank you all for welcoming us into your home and making us feel like part of the family.

Friday, June 28, 2013

A little bit raw...

Day three and it becomes apparent that there is some advice I should have taken especially when it comes to chamois cream need I say more :/ So today I ooood and ahhhhhed all the way to Natchez while Mitts enjoyed the countryside. Now here we are looking for a place to sleep and  a bike shop where I could buy some cream and maybe some more bike shorts before  tomorrow when we head to the Natchez trace for three or so days of riding and camping.

Crossing our first border into a new land...

On day two Mitts and I found some peace and quiet on some Louisiana country roads before making our first border crossing into Mississippi. We immediately saw an improvement in the roads (see below picture hehe). We made about 55miles this day, an improvement on the day before. On our second night we ended up sleeping in the Crosby Baptist Church. The folks in this church community were very welcoming, providing us with dinner with the kids at the VBS and even taking us to their house to shower and wash our clothes. So the journey continues tomorrow after some sleep ...

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Southern hospitality doesn't disappoint ...

So we made it through our first day of pedaling not only alive but in good spirits and delighted by the people we have met and the generosity they have shown us. Ok so we got a late start putting us in the blazing heat for longer than we had originally hoped but other than that we couldn't of asked for a better first day of riding. We had quite a good run on the 61 with a large shoulder most of the way complete with a fresh peaches stand and places to fill our water bottles with ice as well :) We only rode a small mileage today around 30. Not only cause of the heat and it being our first day and all, but because we wanted to check out the Myrtles Plantation apparently one of the most haunted houses in America ranked #13. After our visit to the plantation we headed to the little town of St. Francisville to look for a place to pitch our tents. We wound up asking in at the local fire station about a park or camping site and ended up with an invitation to stay at the fire station. Not only did we end up getting to stay at the fire station but the Chief Tom Robinson and his wife Cindy took us out to dinner and showed us around town as well!! I must say St. Francisville your setting the bar high for this whole southern hospitality thing. We have been so spoiled on our first day thank you all for such a great first riding day :)




Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Cheated a little ...

So we made it to Baton Rouge safe and sound. Granted we cheated a bit getting a lift from a big faced man in a Volvo named Louis. Turns out the roads that lead from New Orleans to Baton Rouge are pretty dodgy for biking so we packed our bikes into Louis's automobile and headed north with him and his Guinea pig Dee Dee. 

Upon arrival in Baton rouge we were greeted by our first awesomely cute blue haired host Rachel and her four lovely cats. We had a yummy home cooked meal at Rachael's place and ended the night with her and her sister Emily and brother in law Joey at a local watering hole for a night cap. 

All in all a good first day even if it was devoid of any pedaling :)

And we're off...

Today Mitts and I are off to Baton Rouge. Leaving behind the character-packed town of New Orleans in search of wide open spaces quieter roads. There is so much motivational malarkey I could say here but I think as usual Dr. Seuss says it best ...

Today is your day.
You're off to Great Places!
You're off and away!

You have brains in your head.

You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself 
any direction you choose.
You're on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who'll decide where to go.

You'll look up and down streets. Look 'em over with care.

About some you will say, "I don't choose to go there."
With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, 
you're too smart to go down any not-so-good street.

And you may not find any

you'll want to go down.
In that case, of course,
you'll head straight out of town.

It's opener there

in the wide open air.

Out there things can happen

and frequently do
to people as brainy
and footsy as you.

And then things start to happen,

don't worry. Don't stew.
Just go right along.
You'll start happening too.



You'll be on y our way up!

You'll be seeing great sights!
You'll join the high fliers
who soar to high heights.

You won't lag behind, because you'll have the speed.

You'll pass the whole gang and you'll soon take the lead.
Wherever you fly, you'll be best of the best.
Wherever you go, you will top all the rest.

Except when you don't.

Because, sometimes, you won't.

I'm sorry to say so

but, sadly, it's true
that Bang-ups
and Hang-ups
can happen to you.

You can get all hung up

in a prickle-ly perch.
And your gang will fly on.
You'll be left in a Lurch.

You'll come down from the Lurch

with an unpleasant bump.
And the chances are, then,
that you'll be in a Slump.

And when you're in a Slump,

you're not in for much fun.
Un-slumping yourself
is not easily done.

You will come to a place where the streets are not marked.

Some windows are lighted. But mostly they're darked.
A place you could sprain both your elbow and chin!
Do you dare to stay out? Do you dare to go in?
How much can you lose? How much can you win?

And IF you go in, should you turn left or right...

or right-and-three-quarters? Or, maybe, not quite?
Or go around back and sneak in from behind?
Simple it's not, I'm afraid you will find,
for a mind-maker-upper to make up his mind.

You can get so confused

that you'll start in to race
down long wiggled roads at a break-necking pace
and grind on for miles cross weirdish wild space,
headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.
The Waiting Place...

...for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or the waiting around for a Yes or No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite

or waiting for the wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.
Everyone is just waiting.


That's not for you!

Somehow you'll escape

all that waiting and staying
You'll find the bright places
where Boom Bands are playing.

With banner flip-flapping,

once more you'll ride high!
Ready for anything under the sky.
Ready because you're that kind of a guy!

Oh, the places you'll go! There is fun to be done!

There are points to be scored. There are games to be won.
And the magical things you can do with that ball
will make you the winning-est winner of all.
Fame! You'll be as famous as famous can be,
with the whole wide world watching you win on TV.

Except when they don't

Because, sometimes they won't.

I'm afraid that some times

you'll play lonely games too.
Games you can't win
'cause you'll play against you.

All Alone!

Whether you like it or not,
Alone will be something
you'll be quite a lot.

And when you're alone, there's a very good chance

you'll meet things that scare you right out of your pants.
There are some, down the road between hither and yon,
that can scare you so much you won't want to go on.

But on you will go

though the weather be foul.
On you will go
though your enemies prowl.
On you will go
though the Hakken-Kraks howl.
Onward up many
a frightening creek,
though your arms may get sore
and your sneakers may leak.

On and on you will hike,

And I know you'll hike far
and face up to your problems
whatever they are.

You'll get mixed up, of course,

as you already know.
You'll get mixed up 
with many strange birds as you go.
So be sure when you step.
Step with care and great tact
and remember that Life's 
a Great Balancing Act.
Just never foget to be dexterous and deft.
And never mix up your right foot with your left.

And will you succeed?

Yes! You will, indeed!
(98 and 3/4 percent guaranteed.)



be your name Buxbaum or Bixby or Bray
or Mordecai Ali Van Allen O'Shea,
You're off the Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting.
So...get on your way!