I’m going to have to make this one quick because it’s 9pm now and we’re waking up at 4:30am tomorrow morning for our first century! A century is a 100 mile ride. I apologize for any lack of humor or detail, but I’m exhausted from these past two days and I have a long day ahead of me tomorrow.

Here’s some pictures from today:

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Today we woke up around 6am, ate breakfast, did our dedications and headed out. We knew the day would be hot, so we left around 8am. Since the ride was only supposed to be 56 miles, we planned to arrive around 1:30 or 2pm when the heat is almost at it’s hottest. The ride started out smoothly and then surprise! We had to reroute again. We ended up adding about 13 miles to our trip because of this:

reroute

If you look closely, you’ll see the little road that we wanted to take past Mackall Airport. But it turned out that the road was entirely gravel. There were a lot of gravel roads in that place that we didn’t know about. The van tried to find other options for about an hour until we decided just to go back and around the long way. The ride wasn’t too scenic. There were a few long roads that were a little hilly, and there was almost no shade.

Our ride totaled 69 miles. Here’s all the GPS stats: http://connect.garmin.com/activity/518212584. This ride took us just as long as our 82 mile ride yesterday! It was a long, hot day.

My ride group was Brad, Taylor, and Kenny. Unfortunately, Taylor reinjured a serious knee injury that she had previously gotten surgery for, and had to ride in the van. She wasn’t happy about not being able to finish the ride and it took some convincing from the rest of us for her to decide to stop riding. We saw a lot of military vehicles and airplanes and helicopters as we were riding through Fort Bragg. We even saw some paratroopers jump out of a plane (pictured first above). Our group was cruising today! We went fast! It was really hot, and we all just wanted to get to the host as fast as we could so we could get out of the heat. There was some headwind today and we took turns leading and drafting.

About 20 miles out from our host, the minister of the church we are staying at (Pee Dee United Methodist Church) came to meet us! He cheered us on and even got some ice cold water donated for us! We try to put ice into our water cooler in the morning, but as the day goes on, our water gets hot and there’s not much we can do about it. Cold water is ALWAYS appreciated! The minister even got two police cars to escort us into the city of Rockingham, NC! We didn’t have to stop at any red lights and all traffic was diverted around us! All of us got to ride as one big pack instead of in riding groups and we got to take up an entire lane of traffic! There are some pictures above and there’s a video on my Facebook page!

A friend of mine from high school, Kristen, lives nearby, so she came and donated freezy pops and some vegetarian bagel sandwiches for Haley and Michelle! It was so nice to see her again! We pole vaulted together in high school for a year before she came back and coached. Thanks Kristen!

When we arrived at the host, we met the mayor of the city and he gave us coozies and Rockingham pins! Then we were taken to the local high school where we got to shower. We met a man there who showed us their sports hall of fame and all of the high school athletes who had made it to professional leagues. Apparently football is big here. (I think that’s an understatement) He thanked us for bringing good into the world to counteract the bad that is always heard in the news. We ate pasta and salad, then some people went to a local pool to hang out. I stayed behind to unwind and play their piano. I think it was the nicest piano I’ve encountered so far! I was talking to one of the church members and he said that they spared no expense when they replaced it a few years ago! Some other church members came to listen to my mediocre abilities and complimented me much too generously.

That about sums it up for today. Again I apologize for the brevity and seriousness, so here’s a terrible bike joke: Why can’t a bike stand up on it’s own? Because it’s two tired! Get it? It has two tires? Laugh it up because I think that’s about the only thing that’s funny in this post!

I can’t wait to read all of your comments in the morning!

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