this side of the mountains

I’m stopped for lunch in Charlottesville, VA. If a ritzier college town than this exists, I don’t want to know about it. It’s cute and quaint, but everything looks very expensive.

Had a solid night of sleep at the Cookie Lady’s, and got back on the road just after 8 this morning. My muscles are pretty sore though, from yesterday’s strain.

I wasn’t sure how intense the climb up to the Parkway would really be, so when I pulled up to Vesuvius just before 3pm, I decided to go for it. Several stops to stretch, refresh myself, and breathe later, I made it onto the Parkway. The Parkway itself was no cakewalk, and I began to regret not stopping for extra water before the ascent, because there weren’t any service stops up there either. But, for the most part, I took it in stride, and laughed at myself for grumbling in such beautiful surroundings. I probably would have enjoyed the Blue Ridge more if I had camped in Vesuvius, but I wouldn’t have slept as well. Win some, lose some.

I didn’t have much energy for talking after I reached the Cookie Lady’s either. Fortunately, she was happy to let me rest as she carried on the conversation. She was very nice and welcoming. She told me that she considers the cyclists who pass through her family. I have to admit though, that I felt a little sorry for her being all alone in her house in little Afton. I was glad I was able to provide her what little company I could.

It’s a little more than 50 miles to Mineral, my planned stop this evening. A little more than 80 to Fredericksburg, my planned stop for tomorrow. Then a little more than 80 to Arlington Memorial Bridge on Sunday.

DC folks: looks like I’ll be rolling in late Sunday afternoon.


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