Sunday, June 1, 2008

Biking the Heart of Florida for Bill

Somewhere between Yeehaw Junction and Lake Wales -- It's 7:30 a.m. and I have 54.7 miles in the books. Left the motel at 3:30 a.m. and pedaled in darkness to the Atlantic Ocean 2.5 miles to the east. I dipped my front wheel into the surf and listened to the waves crashing and looked at the heavens and adored the twinkling stars. I called Jennifer, my sweetie, at 4 a.m. and she prayed for a safe bike voyage across the state as I held the phone up and let her hear the foamy waves hitting the beach.

Then I turned the bike around and headed west on State Road 60, biking about 10 miles from downtown Vero Beach to the I-95 entrance. It was still pitch black as I entered a wall of darkness for the 25-mile excursion to Yeehaw Junction. I had white and red strobe lights illuminating the way and the sky began to turn blue behind me as I headed west and approached Yeehaw. Thin clouds of fog wrapped pine trees along 60 as I came to Yeehaw.

This memorial bike ride for Bill Fox clicked into a higher gear when I met Steve Swiger, my fellow Seminole Heights Bicycle Club pal who is driving the SAG. I met Steve around mile 46, 7 miles west of Yeehaw Junction. The flat terrain of blowing grass and grazing cattle reminds me of an African savannah and the beautiful light right after sunrise was inspiring. I'm hammering west and hope to be in Lake Wales in the 9:30-10 AM range.

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