potlucks are the best.
we (m&m, samuel and i) bring the same thing every time: sardines, peppers, cheese, broccoli, other veggies as available, fruit, italian seasoning, tortillas, and everything else we have in our bags. tonight is likely our last time all together before we part ways tomorrow.
in celebration of our last night, we decided to have dinner together, and what an awesome time we had! good company and good food. :) it was a perfect end to a hard day of riding.
we climbed our largest hill today with an almost 900' climb over four miles, then another one (almost 700') shortly after. both descents were super cold, as the marine layer blasted through every opening it could find.
but before launching into those, we had to go under a closed gate to get into the famous drive thru tree in leggett. what can i say? we were there, willing to pay, but no one to receive our money. ;-)
we finally rolled into westport to eat, only to bike past a tiny corner market/deli/post office. we (m&m samuel and i) stopped and said..."is this it?" well it was all we needed because they made amazing sandwiches! i had a big sandwich and then went back for a toasted bagel with loads of cream cheese. (i haven't been able to stop thinking about bagels and cream cheese since alisa mentioned them on my facebook wall. thank you for that.)
side note: i learned a spanish word from meredith called "pavera" which means something like "once you start laughing, you can't stop even if nothing's funny" because i suddenly got the giggles and couldn't stop. (i just refer to it as "losing it.")
after our break, we took off to hit our next milestone 17 miles away: fort bragg, but i noticed my front shifter was getting worse. earlier this morning, i heard a 'pop!' but just thought to myself that i should probably look at it during lunch, no biggy, but forgot to because lunch time food and convo was so fun. well, it turned out the shifter cable was hanging on by (literally) two threads. when i realized it, i stopped using my lowest (or is it "highest?" i always get these confused. the gear that helps me get up hills) gear, and stayed on my middle ring. in other words, i went from having 21 gears to 7. this was a very interesting opportunity to bike more efficiently by taking every downhill as an opportunity to push me up the next hill. i pedaled HARD for 17 miles until i finally got to a bike shop in fort bragg. meanwhile, i blazed past samuel and m&m to get to my destination. no one could get past this girl on a mission! samuel eventually met me and while we waited for my cable to get replaced, samuel and i devoured two cookies (each) and a cup of whole milk, while foxy (the bike shop owner's dog) stared at us longingly through the window. stop it. too cute.
bike repair, groceries, and 10 more miles or something to our campground for the night, bringing our total to 57 miles today. we hustled and finally got there to (say it with me) shower, eat, and sleep!
this week has FLOWN by. it's wild to think we will be cycling through sf in just a few days. that will be another huge milestone. we can't wait to see friends who have expressed wanting to come out and see us! we even have a friend who's going to ride with us from sf to sc! whoohoo! it will mean a lot to be supported by people we know and love!