DAY 10

March 24, 1999

I got up early and ate a 1/2-cup of oatmeal and left at 6:45 am.  There was an early morning mist as the sun was beginning to rise.    Continuing west on 60, I could watch the colorful sunrise through my helmet mirror.   Stopping at a small convenient store after riding about and hour, I bought a granola bar to eat now, and 3 powerbars for later.  There was a shoulder most of the way except for where they were still doing some road construction.  One section they re-routed 60W and merged it with 60E to form one 2-lane road while they were doing bridge construction.  The lanes were very narrow with those barrier walls on each side.   Absolutely no room for me and a car to pass me.  But this was my only choice, so I waited for a break in traffic and then biked it as fast as I could.   About halfway there was a small clearing on the right.  As soon as I got to it I hit my brakes and ducked into that area pressing myself against the wall as the traffic sped by.   Then with another small break in traffic I finished my way across with a semi nippin' at my rear wheel. 

The shoulder disappeared a few miles before entering Brandon and I had to ride the white line again.  In Brandon I felt safer riding the sidewalks until the shoulder re-appeared.  Riding through Tampa was very easy, except for a couple of places where the right lane exits off and I had to cross two lanes of traffic to stay on 60.  One was at the I75 exit and the other was for the Tampa airport exit.  Both times I waited for the best clearing in traffic then pedaled as fast as I could across.    Meanwhile telling myself "that's what they make brakes for....  so people can slow down for idiots like me."  hee hee

I biked across the Courtney Campbell bridge and hit the first gas station in Clearwater.    I had to clear some water of my own.  :)  While there I met Mark, an exceptionally nice guy that was very interested in my trip.  We talked for about 20 minutes and I gave him the web address so he could get updated as I ride.

Arriving at Kathleen's around 1pm (70.62 miles), I was much earlier than I or she expected.  I showered and we talked a bit about the PT profession and her private practice.  Her two girls, Amanda and Allison came home from school and Amanda was kind enough to fix me a peanut butter sandwich. When Kathleen's husband, David, got home everyone got ready for tonight's softball game (Amanda and Allison play on the same team).   It ended up being a very exciting game with Amanda and Allison's team making a comeback from losing at 5-1 to a tie game at 6-6.    woooo hooooo    What a great time at the ball field :)

Afterwards, Amanda and Allison had pizza and Kathleen, David and I had vegetable lasagna.    WOW!  That was good!!  I was very hungry and ate 3 servings of lasagna, several breadsticks, a salad and a beer.  I was trying not to eat too much and forced myself to eat slowly.... but when you're that hungry and the food is that good, it was hard to contain myself.  :) Actually, I tried to contain myself once, but I escaped  hee hee.  OK some stupid humor in my journal.

After dinner I tried to maintain a conversation and stay as awake as long possible.   But by 11:30 I was really giving out after a long day.  So I headed off to dreamland :)

Today - 70.62 miles
Total - 481 miles
Temp - 80 degrees Fahrenheit

     Today's Pics

previous page back to trip index next page
back index next