Saturday, August 1, 2009
- Start: Mackinaw City, MI
- Day Miles: Ride Time: Total Trip Miles:
So far we've managed 2 miles. A trip to the grocery then back to the school to wait for the local library to open. Last night we'd left the bike under a covered shelter near the restrooms while scouting out a place to sleep. Anthills were everywhere in that area but we eventually found a nice patch of anthill free grass on the first base line of a baseball field with grass growing throughout the infield. All around the field grass and weeds were waist high. No one would bug us here.
While walking back to retrieve the bike a car pulled into deep left field and parked. No one was there as we walked past but the decorative license plate on the front of the car said "bicycle."
"If we dawdled setting up do you think they'd invite us back to their place?"
We set up with gusto and while we were doing so he came back. The guy was a bit older and kept looking our way while we set up. Next he checked the trunk of his car, the back seat, then got in the front and sat with the lights out. What was he doing? We took the bottles of water we'd filled from the bathroom hot water tap and ducked into a disused dugout to take a birdbath.
The mosquitoes were of the vicious variety and repeatedly bit right through your spandex as we squatted to set up the tarp. A little sore we ran for the tarp and slid under the sleeping bag to eat a cold can of baked beans before sleeping.
Around 12:30am our cell phone went off. All across the UP we'd had no signal and the one time we forgot to shut it off a person called and then hung up after a couple rings.
Dave went to the bathroom and the parked car was still there with the guy sleeping in it. Ah well. At 6:30am Heather woke up and went to the bathroom. Two trucks had showed up and they were messing with something in the truck beds. Hmm... back to sleep anyway. At 8:30 we both crawled out in search of breakfast and found two dozen cars in left field. What had we stumbled into? A bicycle tour was gathering for take off. By the time we packed up 50+ cars lined the outfield, three tour buses were loading passengers and two Ryder trucks took off with bicycles and luggage.
The trip was starting in southern Michigan and these folks had all parked on the finish line to take off once the race was over. All the ones who had parked at the start line would get bussed back after the trip. Several folks thought we were part of the show until we started to load up to ride off. We chatted with a few different people but never the guy who'd slept in his car all night, he will always remain a mystery.
It was supposed to rain this afternoon so we decided to wait out the weather by hiding in the library in town. From here we'll zigzag down to Cadillac to visit an aunt of Heather's.