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2011 Ride

Break Down & Fix Up

Day 59: Got an early start on the day, with plans (always tenuous when trekking by bike) to make Nacogdoches by nightfall, where we were expected for a potluck dinner to meet yet more Texas pipeline opponents. But the first pedal stroke of the day propelled me nowhere. Nor did the second. Turns out a screw on a bolt that had been specially fabricated for the trike (after a breakdown on day one of late year’s ride) had vibrated off, so the derailleur was no longer attached to the back fork. In an ironic twist, Ron had just departed to finally retrieve his bike, which had itself been repaired for a derailleur problem, and now I had my own. But to our amazing good fortune, David Daniel was there to once again help us out of our predicament.

He and Ron scoured the local hardware stores to find what we needed while I waited with the trike by the side of the road next to a small flea market/produce stand. When Jack, the owner of 40 years, rolled up in his truck, I learned the country music he had blaring 24/7 behind the fence was to keep the local skunks at bay. He said there was room enough in the world for both him and skunks, he just didn’t want them repelling his customers. Sounded like a fair enough arrangement to me.

Trike finally repaired, we reconnoitered in Tyler, where Ron, David and I did a lengthy interview with the local NBC news affiliate. Another ten or so miles down the road, local CBS News affiliate reporter/anchor Jennifer Heathcock and her cameraman caught up with us for another roadside interview. By now, we were never going make Nacogdoches, so we called it a day in Jacksonville, where camping could be found. Ended the day with 44 more miles under our belt at a lakeside park, where I’m writing this blog in the cold at a picnic table under what looks to be close to a full moon. Thanks to Patagonia for so generously gearing me up to keep me warm on nights just like tonight! Today was a good day.

For a look at the ride story that ran in today’s Tyler Morning Telegraph, check out:  http://tinyurl.com/buzhz3f.

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