Friday, April 24, 2009

Cleaning, cleaning, cleaning...

This is my new favorite activity. I love tinkering, tweaking, adjusting. I have gone from knowing very little about this machine, to feeling quite competent. As I told you, the other day I had to get a major adjustment, a whole new derailleur cable. This was residue from my bike crash back in Navasota. Well, the bike mechanic told me that the cable would stretch in a few days and that I would need to get it fixed because it would cease to shift smoothly.

We're not near a bike shop in this run of the trip, so I, getting a hint of what to do from one of the guides, fixed it myself! Go me!

And then Jan, today, was having some trouble with HER derailleur and I fixed IT too! (She currently thinks I'm a mechanical wizard, which is a stretch, but it is true that she needed help, I gave it to her, and my help fixed her problem. Go me! (I wouldn't normally say this so much, but it is a real delight to have the confidence to plunge in and fix little problems.)

After Jan gushed to me, my whole day changed today. Before that I was just, well, riding, wondering what might pop up to catch my interest. I was enjoying the scenery, the Cypress Bogs (thanks for telling me about them) and humming songs (thanks for all the Florida song hints.) I was, as usual, musing about how and if my life has changed as a result of this ride.

And then Jan had that problem and I fixed it and she thanked me. It felt so good. So good. So simple and good.

Sometimes something doesn't have to be complicated to make a difference. A simple thank you made a huge difference to me today. A simple feeling of competence made a huge difference to me today. Simple stuff. Simple lessons.

Tomorrow we ride a short distance to a place that has clear waters in a natural spring. I have never been there before but the name, Wakulla Springs, is alluring. We ride in, spend a whole day there, and ride out. I'll tell you as much as I can. I am meeting some Chamber of Commerce people so I'll get the lowdown and, probably, will tell you to come visit too. Heck, I love water and I might not want to leave. Actually, no, I am ready to see my home and my town and my friends. But that's not to say I won't come back.

Pretty soon, y'all. Pretty soon.

For now - cheers,


restless said...

It has been so great visiting your blog and reading how inspired you are by the small things. Things I take for granted on a daily basis.Of course the way you write it about it all is inspiring and makes me mindful to count my many blessings. As a write, I'm enjoying a not so fierce thunderstorm after an 80+ degree day in Asheville. The rain is spitting about but it's more noise than anything.Still nice.... What happened to your fourth rider, Sherry? I hope she's OK.
Tracey (we met at Mardi's house this winter)

Julie said...

What will the rest of us do when your tour has ended? I'll be at a loss for my daily fix of "what did Laurey do today?" I'm so glad you've made it this far and have learned so much, too much to put into words. I've been enjoying your daily posts and looking forward to them for so long, I don't know how I'll manage. But, life is full of wonderful surprises and I'm sure something will touch me as much as this has. Be safe.

Heather Masterton said...

Don't cry, little girl, I'll fix your derailleur!!

Rachel said...

You were front page news today (Saturday) in the Asheville Citizen-Times. Nice Photo, and good article. Also link to the article on the web site (with a different photo). Way to go!

Nancy said...

Hi Laurey,
Hope you are enjoying the beauty of Wakulla Springs. Is the big platform still there? Another woman and I were shamed by a 10-year-old into jumping off of it. But what an adrenalin rush. We did it again.

Went for a short ride today and thought of you all. Yes, the weather is getting hot.
Happy pedaling.

Anne Cowan said...

Laurey, I was in Burnsville yesterday riding the Metric and after lunch walking back to our car, I saw a newspaper with cyclists on the front. I immediately recognized you from your blog and of course the article. I made my husband go get quarters so I could buy one!!! Great article and picture. You are near the end and it will be hard to stop getting your daily updates. Best wishes for the last few days.

Michael said...

A note for Julie (Hey, Laurey!)

I realize it was a rhetorical question, but here are a couple of thoughts on what to do when Laurey's cross country journey ends. Sign up for Laurey's electronic newsletter - it's only once a week but it's great fun to hear her stories from Asheville...

Also, check out "Roz rows the Pacific" ( and follow Roz as she prepares for the second leg of her solo row from San Francisco to Australia! Roz, like Laurey, is an amazing woman...

Enjoy! Deb & Michael