Saturday, October 18, 2014

Day 2 - Road Magic

Goal:  San Gabriel, CA.  I woke up at 5:15 A.M., ready to leave at 5:30.  The bike was fully packed already.  As I always needed help to get it out the door (mostly to keep the dogs from escaping), Jeanette agreed to be awoken.  It seemed much heavier than the day before... and I think it was.  Jeanette got up and got everyone else in the house up, and they all prayed over me, and then I was out the door at maybe 5:45.

It was, of course, dark outside, but I wanted to travel in the dark to avoid traffic, and I especially wanted to get through downtown Los Angeles, which was 10 miles away, in the quieter hours of the morning.  I took Venice Boulevard all the way into downtown, then turned left on Main Street.  I took Main Street all the way to Cesar Chavez Blvd, then turned left and went down to Mission, less than a mile.  On Mission I turned left and took a bike lane all the way to Valley Blvd and turned right.

Nearing the top of the big hill.
There was on place on Venice that was an incline and I got terribly out of breath (didn't stop, however).  But I was gasping. There were a couple of arched bridges to go over, but nothing like the monster arched bridges down by Long Beach.  I was able to cycle over these other bridges.  There was only one place on Valley, just west of where the 710 connects that I got off the bike and walked it up the hill.  It was a long, steep hill, and I downed some Gatorade at the top for refueling.  I hadn't eaten or had a whole lot to drink up to that point, and that was about 15-16 miles into the 21 mile journey.

After the big hill I rode the rest of the way in with little to no difficulty.  I arrived at my host's house at 8:25 A.M.  I was having a bit of an asthma attack for a little while.  I only gained 500 feet in altitude, but I don't think I had quite recovered from the stress of that first hill on Venice.

This host is a long-time friend, Priscilla, and her husband, Richard.  They live in a little complex of houses/single apartments that were built by her landlady's father in the 1950's.  Her landlady is also a mutual friend as we all used to attend the same church in Santa Monica.

One of the apartment units is empty because it needs a lot of work that she can't afford to do at the moment, Right now just two cats are living there, and she offered me the apartment rent-free for a few months (or longer) plus work (not remodeling work but work for her).  Well, part of this trip is being open to new possibilities.  The Lord knows that I lost a lot of $$$ with the British fiasco.  I needed some time to recover.  Maybe now I will have some time.

A second birthday celebration
So, although I had totally planned to be in Redlands for tomorrow, Oct. 19, I have decided to stay in San Gabriel for a while with the free rent and just recuperate some finances as well as maybe just an emotional rest period.  Of course I've barely got a stitch of anything, so a few basic supplies will have to be procured, not the least of which is some type of bed.  I guess I'll be semi-camping in the apartment with the two cats.  Thankfully I love cats, and they are even Siamese.

I will continue my journey soon.

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