After an amazing night at the Wills Church at Glendale it took a while to get up and pack up. Micheal was at the monument waiting for me to finish. He had driven 4 hours with his wife to come to see me. Lots of international riders don’t have have the luxury of meeting anyone they know at the finish but in my case a couple of dot watchers and Micheal would be at the monument. It amazing how quickly we make friends almost like the time we were kids. I am super grateful for that.
Got on the road a few miles later I hit the bike path. The Virginia Capital Trail ran all the way from the junction of the church all the way to Williamsburg. Slowly rode towards Jamestown. Started to get a little thirsty and stopped at the gas station to get coffee. A sign inside the gas station said they had the worlds best fried chicken. The chef was Henry who was from Pakistan. A quick conversation in Hindi and he cooked me a great breakfast. Sat outside eating breakfast and drinking coffee when a old black man pulls up. The first thing he says to me was ” Nice to see a black man riding a bicycle, all I see are these skinny white guys on bikes”. Tried to explain to him that i was brown but since I don’t use sun screen I qualify to be black. After that fun conversation went in to pay. The Pakistani guy refused to accept any money. He was just happy to speak in Urdu/Hindi to someone after a long time.
Back on the road and headed towards Jamestown. Turning out of town i met Linda who was waiting to see me. Chatted with her for a little while before heading out. Got on the road and headed towards Williamsburg. At the town of Williamsburg i sat down to get a coke. A couple of people stopped by to ask me about my ride. The girl who stopped by was going to do the Appalachian trek the next month. Gave her my pepper spray since i wouldn’t need it anymore. Got back on the road and headed towards Yorktown. On my way met another cyclist who was riding on the wrong side of the street. Caught up to her and asked her why she was riding on the other side of the street. She thinks its safer. Wished her well and left. Sometimes its better to say nothing at all.
Cathy called while i was riding to Yorktown. She had stayed awake tracking me but hadn’t seen any movement on the tracker page. Restarted my tracker and pinged Micheal saying I was a few mins away. Finally after what seemed to be an eternity rolled into Yorktown. Onward to the monument. Followed the route that took me the wrong way on the street and climbed this long hill towards the monument. At the corner of the hill I saw Micheal. Its just amazing to see him after a long long time. Rode to the monument and went around it. Put the bike against it and took off my gloves. Finally it was over. Micheal, his wife , Tom and Adam were at the finish line waiting for me. Apparently Adam and Christy had finished a while ago. Well they hadn’t stopped to eat a burger with a Pakistani guy so that was an addition to the experience that I had.
Tom who came to see me finish had found a place at the church for me to stay. Bundled the bikes into the car and headed to the bike shop to pick up my stuff. Bike beat had kept everything I had sent to them super well. Nice guys for not charging me anything for holding the box. Tom dropped us back to the church after a quick stop at the Walmart. Micheal had to leave to head home so that he could get to work the next day. Its amazing that he had driven 4 hours just to see me for a few mins. It was super hard for him to come but he did just so that I would have someone at the finish. At the church I sat down and reflected on the last couple of months that i had spent on the road. Its hard to believe that it was finally over. I don’t have to wake up in the morning and get on the bike again. I can sit on my ass and do nothing. Tom was going to take me to Williamsburg to the train station to get a train to Newyork in 2 days so the next couple of days are going to be restful. Got a quick shower and got to sit out on the deck having a smoke and drinking coffee. A good end to the day.
I had taken Eric’s stuff to the monument which i would need to send to Nathan. Also my t-shirt from the ride will have to be sent to The Bike House to add to the collection. The kindness that everyone has shown to me on the ride has been contrary to everything that the media portrays America to be. I think teachers like Micheal help the world to be a better place. Looks like America would need a few more of these kinds of teachers and all the no trespassing signs will go away.
Lesson for the Day: The media in America portrays the country to be full of people walking around with guns but in reality they don’t walk around with it nor do they pull it out when they see a stranger.
Up Next : Going Home
At the Finish. Thank you Joy and Mike for the Video.