My Travel Journal - 2002 Anacortes, Washington to White Plains, NY
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Day Minus One - 14 June 2002 Friday
I arrive home from work about 1:30, and finish all the packing. Pat's friend Mona comes over to take photos. The car service comes to pick me up in the pouring rain. Dee's (Car Service) grandson and I load the bike box and all belongings into his pick-up truck (since a regular car doesn't have room for the bike box), in the back under the hardcover. We get to the airport about three hours early. Check-in is no problem. The flight is delayed half an hour. The flight to Seattle is uneventful. I sleep for a while and also start reading the book "Chicken Soup for the Traveler's Soul," which I received as a gift from my brother and sister-in-law (Richard and Lynda).
I arrive in nice weather around midnight in Seattle. I collect my bags and the bike box (oversize area) at baggage claims. The bike box is in pretty good shape, with the exception of a big puncture in the box. A shuttle van took me and my goods to the hotel Doubletree SeaTac. At about 1:00 AM, I begin assembling the bike. The puncture in the box fortunately missed the bike, and the bike is in good shape. I read a bit more of the book and fall asleep around 2:00 A.M.
Day Zero - 15 June 2002 Saturday
I awake at 6:00 after only four hours sleep, but I'm wide-awake. Adrenalin. I go to the fitness center in the hotel and spend one hour on the stationary bike. Old habits die hard. It's a beautiful day. I call Enterprise vehicle rental for the cargo van. Sadly, they have no records of my reservation. I realize that I've left all my documents in a folder back at home - if I had a brain I'd be dangerous. I call my neighbor, Joe Pollio, who goes to the house and reads the confirmation number off to me. Enterprise then delivers the requested van. I wheel the bike loaded up with panniers out of the hotel room, into and down elevator and out the hotel door. It reminds me of doing the same out of Heathrow airport 25 years earlier.
There's a busload of seniors who've just arrived and express curiosity at my bike. I tell them what I'm doing and get some cheers. I load the bike into my Enterprise rental van and drive to a local bike shop (Seattle Bike Repair in University district), and drop off the bike for some last minute checks before the journey. I drive up to Amanda's and we have a great lunch together, then walk around downtown Seattle. We drive over to where she's hoping to move. I take photos of Amanda in front of the place (Photo 1-01) and she takes a photo of me in front of van (Photo 1-02). We then walk around some more, return to her place, print out the itinerary, and say our farewells. I return for the bike before 5 PM. They've done about $200 worth of tune-up work, including replacing the chain (you really don't want a chain to break out in the middle of nowhere). I also buy a few other essentials, including a 3rd water bottle for the bike frame.
I drive the van up to Anacortes, about an hour and a half distance, and check into the fine Gateway Hotel (Photo 1-03). The friendly hotel proprietor has her grandkids over. She says she gets a number of bike-tourists. I drop the van off nearby at closed Enterprise facility, get on the bike, and drive around downtown. From there, I do a little bit of exploration, drive down to the water to dip my tire in the Pacific and take a photo (Photo 1-04). On way back, I pick up a Subway sandwich and return to the hotel room. It's nice and clean, with a fan. I prepare for the journey beginning on the following day, and finish the book "Chicken Soup for the Traveler's Soul", leaving it behind for the next traveler.
Copyright 2002 - 2005