Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Sunflower Patches

August 18, 2013
Grand Canyon, AZ to Williams, AZ

We started today with a group photo at the rim of the canyon.  We did our team cheer there too.  It was a pretty unbelievable start to the day.  

Today, for the first time all trip, we backtracked on the road we took into the Grand Canyon for a little over 20 miles.  It was a really strange feeling going by the same things we'd gone by two days earlier but in the other direction.  I was riding with the group I had hiked the canyon with.  We all were feeling it in our calves despite how in shape our legs are.  I guess we don't use our calves as much biking.  The ride was short and lots of small, gradual hills.  Unfortunately, Arizona has had the worst drivers we've experienced by a LOT.  A few days ago riders had bottles thrown at them from moving cars while going up hills, one girl even got ranch dressing squirted all over her from a passing car.  Today the cars were passing absurdly close to us even though there was more than enough room in the other lane to go around us safely.  It's really frustrating not being able to do anything about things like that.  We all talked about how we wish there was more about road bikers in drivers ed classes and more bike paths so we could be out of drivers' ways entirely.  I rode most of the day with Ella V and we had some great chats the whole way there.  About 10 miles out, we stopped to play around and have a photo shoot in a patch of wild sunflowers on the side of the road.  It was so much fun!

We made it to Williams in great time.  Although we're staying at a church, the showers were at host family houses.  After Ella V and I were done showering, we sat around and talked with the couple whose house we were at for almost an hour!  They were awesome and I had a very meaningful conversation about teaching and my plans for getting into teaching. It's great to be able to interact with locals in all the different towns we go through.  They really make the stays there memorable.  

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