South Carolina: Smiling Faces, Beautiful Places

Thursday January 5, 2017, 59 miles (95 km) – Total so far: 216 miles (348 km)

Today’s goal: Tour in a new state. Done.
Washington, Ga. to Edgefield, SC.

We’ve toured in many states but never South Carolina. Soon, I’ll have to place a new state flag decal on the fairing but my prerequisite of touring is to ride at least two days and spend one night there. This will be the first of many state sign photos to come. A good feeling.

My fatigue from yesterday seemed much less today. I decided to stop more, drink more and eat more along the way. I set 12 miles as a goal and stuck with it. Also, my left knee was a bit sore, especially while climbing so I used all the gears I paid for and creeped up the hills.

Along the way, the sun came out and the first blue sky of the trip appeared. So nice to see again. It warmed up so much, I was riding in shirt sleeves and had to apply sunscreen. I’ve even started that funny sandal tan on my feet.

Blue skyes, nothing but blue skyes.

Of course, I always keep one eye out for mailbox art. Had to be looking up for this one.

Google really did well finding the less traveled routes. I only came across one small, practaclly deserted town after I got into SC. Kind off reminded me of the towns in Georgia where they film “The Walking Dead”. No zombies here though, just nice folks wondering why that strange guy was taking pics of one of their buildings. It’s all Clara’s fault. She’s a sucker for “bikes against the wall” shots.

Love the sign. The store was no longer open though. Even excellent merchandise can't withstand poor economy.

My riding tactics seemed to be paying off and even though I was riding later in the day, I was riding stronger and without pain. As I usually do, I listened to my iPod for the last ten miles. This really picks me up and the pace quickens. I must look funny to the drivers as they see a cyclist singing and dancing down the road. It’s the effect Music has on me. It makes me forget, at least for the moment, things that may be troubling me. Those artists will never know how they helped an old man have fun while torturing himself. Guess that’s why I’m riding for a cause like Fender Music Foundation.

Pretty soon, I’d made it to Edgefield. The sign said, Home of Ten Governors. Ten? Wow. This is the quintessential Antebellium town with huge, white columned mansions all along the roads. Apparently Sherman was repelled in his attempt to burn it during the civil war. I was greeted with tue southern hospitality at the Edgefield Inn and Clara was offered a place of honor in the main lobby for the night. Now she’s got the big head.

Ms. Lacy took a likin to Clara and Clara is beaming with gratitude.

The endorphin high was strong after today’s accomplishments. I’m sure I irritated everyone I met with over exuberance. Then after two hours, it dropped me like a rock. Boom! Nothing left. Couldn’t even scroll through my Instagram feed. Woke up two hours later with the lights on and the iPad still in my hand. Just gotta go out there tomorrow and get some more.

On a side note, Clara has a bum rear hoof. Her rim is starting to come apart. Noticed it this morning as I was pumping up the tire. I called ahead to The Charleston Bike Shop and Jeff is ordering her a new wheel. Let’s just hope I get there in time. Keep your fingers crossed.