Two days. Presentations. Name games. Practice rides. We all got to know each other very well very quickly. Orientation was packed from sunrise to sunset. Meanwhile, adjusting to heat and humidity has been quite a change for me. The air feels heavy, but i'm getting used to it.
It's exciting to ride with other riders. All of my training rides so far have been alone. When riding with Bike & Build, we put safety first. We ride in groups of three or four to allow cars to pass. At the end of the line, two riders called “Sweep” hold down the end of the with extra tubes and other emergency bike repair needs. Meanwhile, the support van follows the route to drop off the trailer about halfway though. Everyday, we have lunch at the trailer at the halfway point. It's been a challenge for me to learn how to keep a steady pace while riding in a group, but I think we will all be experts soon.
As we continue to move along, what I've been most impacted by is the kindness of the people we encounter. So many people treat us like family. They feed us, house us, and constantly give us thoughtful inspiration for our journey. So many people came out to send us off at the Atlantic Ocean as we dipped our rear tires in the ocean to commemorate the beginning of the trip.
Known as the “grandparents” of NC to SD, Hoyle and Janet were with us from start to finish in Nags Head with fresh cookies and helpful advice. They will meet us in their hometown, Chapel Hill, where we will have our first build day. Our hosts at Nags Head Church sent us off with full hearts and full stomachs with a luxurious meal.
Now we are in Soule Methodist Church. Our kind host, Gerald, gave us a hearty meal and welcomed us to their local high school's graduation celebration. It's early, but I think everyone is ready to go to bed by 9.