Another wonderful day in Delaware

Uneventful sleep, traffic abated late at night & picked up for AM commute. Slept w/o heat, bit chilly. Suspect the down blanket doubled up will require heat for comfort. Need to buy propane soon to learn of consumption.

Found local bike shop about 5 blocks from where I slept. Waited until they opened and used their Pedros grease gun to lube bushings. Randy, 1 bushing wouldn’t take any and several others grudging accepted some. And you say that you are continually greasing the bushings? I will buy the gun from Turner.

Drove out to Brandywine Creek just a little ways away. In DE you are never far from something in state.

Beautiful day: short fingered gloves, short jersey and no knee warmers. Wandered around, Not many miles, leaves still are on and floor is still dark.

Last night I started researching auto GPS units. I have made some navigation errors and have been frustrated upon occasion trying to decipher small scale rand mcnally. Today on drive to somewhere I retraced my AM route to a Best Buy for hands on shopping. I spent maybe an hour learning & quizzing 2 knowledeable salesman. Finally bought a Garmin nuvi 205, their basic unit but it still speaks instructions in a pleasant female voice. I can shut her off, however.

Searched out an office complex just behind bike shop. Quieter off highway further & some partial bldg blockage.

No shower for day 2, didn’t try to find one.

Wed shower at Cal’s I noticed like a scab hanging from my belly. It moved and felt like it was an attached scab and if I pulled it loose I would have a good bleed. How a wound got there escaped my recall. And no further exam was performed. Today when I changed into riding clothes I looked w/ my glasses on and discovered it was a tick buried into my slack belly skin, probably not much blood supply. I had been a host to a tick for like 3 days. The site is red and worried, I hope all the mouth parts came out. Just small details.

Set up gps and loaded in a destination. Looks like it will work. Trick is to make it think like I do for driving back roads.

Halloween. No trick or treaters.

Made some log climb over moves and bested a small rock garden; Platform / clipless pedals would instill confidence to know i can bail with a foot down before a clipped in clipless fall smacks down.

The Wiss, dinner with Cal & the Phillies winning the World series

Quiet sleep. Fixed bfast. drove down road to parking lot to do computer work waiting out AM commute traffic as I am driving into Philly to the Wisahockon trail.

Heavy traffic and several road construction and detours that just put a plug in th traffic flow.

No nibbles on sharing ride. about 1 1/2 hr drive round about to TH at Pachella field. Trail along West side of river are mostly old parkway road bed. On E side made up w/ some technical ups & downs. Forced ride to meet cal at Embassy Suites at Philly airport. The drive to there was a lesson in surface street commute traffic. I noticed in PA pedestrians have no right ofway even in recognized cross walks. I also noticed that perdestrians in  cities ignore traffic regs and force themselves on drivers.

Met Cal, big shower at plush hotel, no freezing or dried insects hanging from the nozzle. He took me to dinner at a place he found in way downtown South Philly. We scored a bar seat w/ great view of TV. And then the game: last 3 innings from rained out game. Rapid Philly crowd. When Philly scored or made a great play the place rocked, the floorboards bounced up & down. The building is one of those ancient ones I was concened about watching the last of the game from the basement. When the pitcher struck out the last Ray the place exploded: cacophany, one older wacko guy shook beer in the air spraying me. We hung around for a little while. the place emptied out onto the street. Several small crowds gathered hooting & hollering. First time in my life that I was in a home town winning a home game for the championship.

I slept in the hotel parking lot. Another chilly night w/ heater on low.

Beautiful morning today.

Drove down to Delaware and White Clay State Forest ride. Short drive.

Globbed onto 2 racer chicks. What a ride. They were refreshing their memories of the trails and rode at a righteous pace. Wonderful trail system. 13.67 miles and 1493′. Worth riding again. Only stops were to figure map out. Great group ride.

More leaves remain on trees here than up North. Which has been snow dumped on. Jim Thorpe received snow. Made it out in time.

Tonight camped in a shopping center parking lot beside a bank. Main highway is  about 150′ unobstructed feet away. Mostly residential.

Going to ride 1 more ride in DE, brandywine Creek park befofre moving down to MD.

Received a jury summons for Spokane County. License tabs arrived at ECM, I shipped them to Slatyfork WVA, home of my next IMBA epic.

Catch up

Rain quit during the night and skies cleared to a beautiful cloudless day.

Rode Salisbury, fun trails and well drained. Amazing for how much rain fell. Some rock gardens getting a little bit better riding over them. Again, PA rocks are smaller than further east. Learned that if I use a lower gear I can almost track stand when I need to.

At TH I encountered several gonzo riders finishing up. Very loquacious and sharing of future rides.

And a wandering drive down to Centerport to S’ house. Found his house. Wonderful visit w/ old college buddy and his wife. He makes long bows as a hobby using the same concept as Indians did. prefers osage orange wood. Crocket and he could swap wood stories.

Phillies smoked the Rays.

Cool, windy, & clear on Mon morn. Plan is to ride French Creek. S sealed my skylight to prevent rain leaking in.

Found french Creek SP. Hot showers and a site for out of state fee of $18.50. Splurged.

Started on ride, visited w/ a guy who was just getting started on his ride and I globbed onto him for his local knowledge. That lasted for about 25 mins and he said that was it for him and he left me to my own. I didn’t pay attention to where I was on the map. My solution again was to ride and try and find myself on the map.

The sky kept getting darker with potential for rain and I wanted to be under cover before rain started.  I finally crossed a road and sort of figured out my location and resigned myself to ride the road back. The EDGE saved me again to point the way back. I found a trail going at the same direction. I perceived the marker color as blue because of my tinted glasses. The color was green and I wandered just a little further than I needed to. By now it is sprinkling. Made it before being soaked. 11.97 miles and believe it 1560′ vert. All kinds of short climbs.

Drove up to shower, clean again. Drove into Birdsboro for groceries and then back to XG. Rain was now falling steadily. And it rained all night long.

I kept the heater on low all night. Comfortable sleeping under double summer blanket. Means burning more fuel.

Rain and high winds forecast for today. Perhaps a drive day to Manheim for tourist and hopefully mail.

Series game is in Philly and was called last night tied after 6. Again in a local with a team in a championship game.

Roof vent still has smal leak, maybe caused by it being cracked open and position of van.

The rest of the day:

Rain & high winds.

Drove cty roads till I hit Rt 23. Old stone houses along windy undulating 2 lane black top. Big field stone.

Visited Hopeful furnace. Closed on Tues. Raining hard anyway but walked around outside of foundry which was locked. Got in on a special tour of viewers into foundry. Like i remember it previously. Man’s ingenuity at the time was masterful. Again cutting of the forests to support the ravenous hunger for hardwood charcoal.

Still looking for a grease gun fitting for Turner bushings. Tried bike shop. No but an incredible collection of old bikes. Look out 29ers:

Look out 29ers
Look out 29ers

PA Dutch grocery store in Elm is gone. Looked forward to pickled red beet eggs and showfly pie.

Drove by my old house. Mill pond has been drained and creek just flows thru. Drained much land which is now grass. House has been added onto & repainted. Basement probably doesn’t flood. replaced handdug well water source:

Former house on White Oak
Former house on White Oak

Drove White Oak into town and then around Manheim. Asbestos is bust. 2 former residences are still occupied. Foundry building is something else. Rt 72 into Lancaster is built up. Drove rt 30 east, jus so many more people. farms galore on side roads.

Continued on rt 30 to my ride of the Wiss tomorrow. Stopped at Paoli, found a parking lot 1/2 block off rt 30 behind commercial bldgs that were made for short row houses. Quiet. Still windy. Series was postponed until tomorrow for better weather.