Sunday, July 29, 2012

SAGBRAW Day 1 Appleton to Manitowoc.....

I was surprised at how early it gets light here. I knew it would be slightly earlier than at home, but it was light enough to ride at 5:20. I was almost ready at that time, too. I drank a cup of coffee, had a light breakfast, checked in on Facebook, and waited for a group of cyclists to leave so I wouldn't be out there quite so all alone. I saw a few individuals leave, but I was looking for the safety net of a bigger group. I kept standing around and standing around, and finally I left alone. I suppose I'm so used to leaving super early on BRAG because we are attempting to escape the brutal heat. The heat here isn't such an issue, at least not early in the morning, so people apparently weren't in as big a hurry to leave.

It wasn't bad, though, even though I rode most of the day almost completely alone. It was also Sunday, so traffic was almost non-existent. I missed the first water stop, but the next stop was only 8 miles down the road and I still had a full bottle of water, so it didn't bother me. Except for feeling dumb because even with a cue sheet, a GPS on my bike with the route loaded, AND directional signs, I still missed the water stop.

They do things a bit differently here than we do on BRAG. There are "water stops" where you can only get water and/or Gatorade (although I did see some snacks at the last one of the day). Then there are "rest stops" where churches or civic organizations are trying to raise some money, and the goodies are for sale. I had a PBJ for $1.25 (on BRAG they are free at every rest stop), two chocolate chip cookies for $1.00 (should have had fruit, but what the heck), and a granola bar for $.75 (which I put in my jersey pocket and haven't eaten yet). I didn't mind spending cash for snacks, especially if it helps a church or other group. In fact, I started thinking maybe that's what the BRAG folks need to do. They could save some money, and I'm willing to bet there wouldn't be nearly so much food wasted.

The campground where we are staying is right on the shore of Lake Michigan. I took Gus down there, and he was perplexed at the waves. (He's never been allowed on a beach before. One more reason to love Wisconsin.) Dana and Joe came right after I got to camp. Joe and Hubby went to play golf (and consumed vast quantities of beer, but I suppose they are allowed), and Dana and I tried to catch up. We only see each other every few years, and there's never enough time to just sit and chat. Today was very nice, just to sit and talk (or walk on the beach and talk, as we also did). Then we all went out for pizza, and I was secretly very glad they didn't serve beer. The guys had had enough.

Why do I look terrified in this picture? I don't know; I'm not very photogenic. I was a little nervous, I guess, but mostly eager to ride.

Gus was excited because he thought he was going somewhere. He's sporting his new hairdo.

Hubby is trying to contain his excitement.

I tried to document every town I went through today. This is the water tower at the school where we started in Appleton.

In Rozmo's absence, I took lots of pictures of barns. There were many from which to choose.

I couldn't tell if this were an old house or a new house copied from an old design. I thought it looked cool, though.

Going through Brillion reminded me of my high school nickname, Brillo. Maybe I should have been paying more attention to the directional arrows and less to taking pictures, and I might not have missed the water stop in Brillion.

This cute little ... church? schoolhouse? ... sits on top of a (very small) hill.

About two tenths of a mile were on a gravel road. I was concentrating so hard on not falling that when I heard a very familiar voice say, "Aren't you going to say hello to me?" I didn't think he was talking to me. It was Miles, the photographer from BRAG. He's taken my picture for 21 years, and he has no idea what my name is.

Another Rozmo-worthy barn picture. I didn't get a very good shot of Mickey Mouse, and I was too stubborn to go back.

I loved that I could see for miles and miles. I never got tired of the scenery.

Long, long stretches of straight (and flat) roads. Roads in Georgia are never this straight, and I don't know why.

This pretty church deserves a better picture.

Another pass-through town, Reedsville. We have a Reidsville in Georgia, where we have a rather large prison.

I had to stop for a car (I know, right?) at this intersection, so I thought I'd take another picture to document my passage through Reedsville.

I saw three buggies of Amish folks, presumably headed to church. I felt awkward taking their picture, and I asked Dana if it were considered rude to do so. She said yes, but everybody does it. I was fascinated and waved at them. They smiled when they waved back, so maybe they forgave my faux pas.

More forever.

I texted this very same picture to Hubby saying, "Toto, we ain't in Georgia anymore." I'm pretty sure there are no signs warning of snowmobile crossing in Georgia.

My first view of Lake Michigan. I risked sand in my biking shoes to get this shot.

More Lake Michigan.

This is a "water stop" on SAGBRAW. That's the whole thing. Right there. All of it.

The view looking out of the RV with Lake Michigan in the background. I stuck my toes in, but it was too cold even for me to swim in. I can't stop looking at it, though.

I don't want to jinx myself, but today was a very easy, nice ride. I stopped about 6 miles from the school where the others are camping, so I have to tack those on to tomorrow morning's ride. Still, I got here at 11:00 AM local time today, so I shouldn't have a problem with a few extra miles.

See you tomorrow night!

1 comment:

DJan said...

Such a treat to have pictures for a change, B. I enjoyed seeing them, and a nice one of you. I don't think you look terrified. Hubby does look to be containing his excitement well, though. :-)