From New Orleans to Sunnyvale, aka Skipping Texas

Yeah, it’s been a long time. I’ve been busy. But today I’m going to catch up on sleep and do laundry, so maybe I can also include a little writing and reflection.

First of all, let’s flash back to when I got onto a train in New Orleans. The date on the ticket reminds me that it was November 11, 2015. My bicycle was stuffed into a bike box. I was happily congratulating myself on my excellent planning skills by not overbuying food the last time I restocked my panniers, so they were a little lighter and smaller than usual. That made it easier to stash them into the luggage racks! But after a few hours of sitting on the train, I started to feel a little hungry, and then realized that of course I would be sitting on this train for two days. With a dining car that charged $8 for a microwaved hot dog.

Oops.

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Mr. Lion feels a little queasy… it’s been a while since we’ve seen the world go by this fast!

Oh well, that was okay. Being in the dining car gave me lots of opportunities to mingle with the other travelers! And I have to say, these weirdos choosing to travel across the country by train instead of by plane are definitely worth talking to. Their stories and reasons for traveling by train range from the inspirational to the downright bizarre and mildly horrifying. Yes, I acknowledge that they may be saying the same thing about me. One girl I met found me such an oddity that she pulled out a camera and videoed our conversation as she subjected me to a formal interview.

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Coastal Trip Day 3: Seaside to Big Sur

In Seaside we got a special treat! My sister Lori had gotten us all little gifts, which she had given to Sue to deliver to Cortney and me. So we had some new things to try out: fun cycling socks and chamois cream.

Our fancy new socks!

Our fancy new socks!

I was very excited about the socks, a little dubious about the chamois cream. But it’s called DZ Nuts, and we had lots of fun asking each other if we’d tried any of deez nuts, so that by itself was a fantastic gift.

We took a look at the route recommended by the Adventure Cycling Association (we never got good at looking at the map very far in advance) and realized that we would have to make some modifications. Continue reading