After a week on the road and a little inflammation in the knee, I arrived at my dear friends, the Boutcher’s home in Sterling, VA. I haven’t seen Eric and Elise since Memorial Day of 2016. At that time they just had their son, Dean, and with the recent addition of twins, are up to three kids less than a year later. Fortunately adding one more large child was not an issue and there was a playpen big enough for me…
The time off allowed me to do a number of things, including:
- Hit golf balls (not the best idea for my knees, but I survived)
- Clean my bike
- Troubleshoot front brake squeak
- Cook and eat, A LOT
- Route planning
- Buy supplies
The time off was great. Not only is my knee now seemingly back to normal, but I was able to experience Northern Virginia while spending time with close friends. Just like old times, Eric and I went out for a few beers at a local pub and were verbally harassed. An inebriated early 20-something was upset that Eric and I were non-smokers and couldn’t bum him a cigarette. We recommended he leave the establishment, which he complied, posthaste.
During this time, it was decided that it would be better to head further south towards Charlottesville, then cross the Appalachians at Waynesboro, similar to where Adventure Cycling’s Transamerica Trail crosses the mountains. Just as I have done so far with the trip, I will continue to blaze my own path further south and into Tennessee, to see some friends in Nashville.
Another addition was made to the rig, a makeshift speaker holder for a Bose bluetooth speaker. While it may not look that pretty, it does not muffle the sound like my handlebar bag or cause unnecessary vibrations and I am fairly confident it won’t fly off my bike. This will be a game changer for my listening pleasure moving forward. Hopefully the dogs of southwestern Virginia, Kentucky and Missouri ignore it and do not give chase. I will keep you posted on those types of encounters, ideally very limited or none at all.
Today I push on to Rixeyville to stay with another WarmShowers host. With cool, overcast weather and an early start, I trust a reasonable arrival time to my next stop for the longest day yet of the trip.