Sunday, September 14, 2008


... Woke the next morning at 5 to the realization that we hadn't put
up our rain guard and the remnants from hurricane hannah had arrived.
After properly shielding ourselves, we slept till 8ish, and then
struck out for nellysford, which looked to be about 15 or 20 miles
south west of Charlottesville, which is what our original route had
been plotted for... So, 57 miles to cville, break, and then a
relatively short jaunt over to nellysford, and monkeyclause, right? In
a way, yes, correct.. But that day we ended up being rained on with
some of the coldest summer rain I've ever felt... Though we had rain
gear (well, kurt actually doesn't really wear his.. It's an 89 cent
emergency poncho and may be more bother than it' a worth!) we ended up
soaked through and through, though it may have been sweat that really
got us wet! Our usual 15 mile matker breaks were compromised by the
fact that getting off our bikes for even just a couple minutes would
allow the chill to catch up to us - had to keep moving!
After a super narrow shoulder/busy/fast section of rt 29, we arrived
in Charlottesville around 4:30 and a little shaken up... Pulled into a
whole foods grocery store and had soup and tea outside on their porch
At this point I had my first phone conversation with peter, the man
behind monkeyclause... He held promise of hot showers, food, and tea
upon our arrival, gave us the directions, and confirmed that it was at
least 35 miles still from where we were...! Ouch... This had been a
possibility in the backs of our minds, as my friend John (doofgoblin)
had written to tell us that very same information, but we half chose
to ignore it, and half just thought that our interpretation of the map
was correct... No.
So, we knew we'd be late, and weren't really relishing going back out
for quite that long in the cold rain, but what really did it was the
vigour with which the rain grew in intensity and how quickly it grew
dark that evening...
But we trudged on, and were about half way there (already really late
When a stranger pulls over to warn us that once we enter the next
county, the shoulder completely disappears and the road becomes all
blind curves and hills... Sure enough, not 10 yards from the county
limits sign, the road become insurmountable and we decide that we're
pretty seriously stranded, and need to call for help, maybe stash our
bikes and equipment really well, get picked up in a car and hope for
the best...
No matter, no cell service.. Which peter had warned me of! Ok, time to
rely on strangers! We started to walk our bikes (one can walk a bike
on the outside of the guard rail easier than riding it..) down the
highway, to get to the next house/exit.. Weirdly enough, there was a
hidden driveway a few hundred feet down from where we were... a small
house with lights on at the top... Up we go! Approaching the house, we
could see a man doing something on the back porch, but didn't want to
startle him, so went to the front and rang the bell... Waited...
Knocked a bit... Waited... No answer. "Huh" we thought, I think... We
go ahead around to the back, where we finally get the man's
attention.. He looks at us with an (now familiar) incredulous
expression as we make our way around to the back door (oh, it was more
like am enclosed patio) and announce our plight! I think he barely
said anything and simply handed me his cell phone.. As I called, we
became introduced - his name is Jesùs and he's there building the
house (probably thought our knock was his partner nailing something)
late, trying to get it done so he can go to back to Georgia, and be
with his family...
Meanwhile, I had gotten a message machine at monkeyclause and told
them to call back... And that we'd be really late!
"well, I can give you a ride in my work van, but there's only 2 seats"
Jesus offered moments later... As one may well imagine, to our immense
Proper seats notwithstanding we piled in (Dianne got the only other
seat, kurt and I got squished in the back with the three bikes, three
trailers, and four panniers) and headed out at an excellent pace, the
fastest we've yet traveled on this bike tour!
Of course we thanked Jesus again and again, though he deferred, saying
that when he was a Christian missionary in Meqico, anything he needed
was given freely, so he knew about having to ask for help, and had
since dedicated his life to helping when he could (earlier that day
had given a homeless man a lift somewhere)
We got to the studio after a little lostedness (not too much, just
enough), let Jesus get some pictures of us crazy travellers, and off
be went, and in we went.....
Peter greeted us warmly and enthusiastically, directing gear trailers
to the studio, clothes and stuff to the house, and us into some hot
Once we started feeling human again, we set up our stuff to play, they
mic'd us up and we played... Hopefully soon, the video and mp3s will
be up on their site and I'll be sure to link to them..
After the show proper, we went back to the house where we ate roasted
root veggies peter had made, while he waxed poetically to us all about
the strange origins of monkeyclaus, time travel, binaural brain wave
research beingm conducted down the road, why western Virginia would be
the place to get back to before 2012, and interrelated these topics in
ways I simply don't have the capacity to properly relate here...!
The next day we uploaded lots of pictures to this very blog(!) and
eventually got headed out for Richmond very late in the day... Maybe
5ish... We got a few miles down the road when the smell of barbeque
stalled us a little further! When in nellysford, find the barbeque!

Sent from my iPod

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