man, today was tough. physically and mentally very challenging. we got a later start than usual because we wanted to visit with nancy before we took off. (she's the one who owns the cottage.)
and what a beautiful time spent in the presence of someone who is so clear on what she needs and wants. nancy is living with cancer and it's terminal. and there truly isn't anything like being with someone who is so explicitly facing death. samuel's mom was like this too. clear. samuel calls it "pure." nancy called it having no fogginess. clarity. it's a gift to live with that sensibility each day, to know what's important and to give all that you can to what you value.
we left nancy's house and started our ride in the thick marine layer, and saw m&m in gualala. they stopped because they saw a bike and thought it was samuel's, but it actually belonged to john. john started touring in virginia back in january, and is doing what is called "the perimeter." that means the perimeter of the entire united states of america. whaaaaat?! yeah, seriously. john's the second guy who is solo touring the perimeter. we met brian in newport, oregon doing the perimeter, but in a mere six months! geez. he stopped at the bike shop because his tread was worn completely thin. brian had put 4500 miles on them. WOW. meeting people like brian and john make our bike tour seem like a sneeze.
anyway, after that interaction, let me sum up the day by saying we climbed a big ass neverending hill (that eventually ended) and encountered a LOT of marine layer that considered burning off, but never did. 56 miles total.
oh, and we had one close crazy cow interaction.
the evening was spent in bodega dunes state park, where free hot showers abound. (they are one of the last state parks that offer free hot water. it was an incredible luxury, btw.) we had another potluck with m&m with one of the best meals! meredith made quesadillas and we had creamy chicken dumpling soup on top of cous cous. everything was so tasty and satisfying. AND, we had two guests tonight: dan and aaron. aaron is 10 years old cycle touring with his dad for two weeks, starting from the small town of elk to san luis obispo. holy cow. i so admire this trip that the two of them are on. it inspires me to take epic trips with my kids one day. i am seeing that more and more is possible with children.
the fun news? we are all planning to rendezvous in half moon bay on the 10th. :-) let the good times roll.