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05/13 Washington, DC

Tried to sleep late today. Couldn't. Awoke at 6. (That's noon in Europe) Got up at 8. Visited and had breakfast with George. Adele came in off the patio about 9:45. Lisa joined us about 10:30. Lisa and Adele had breakfast.

After much searching, we found a bikes store that sells and services Santana Tandems. I talked to Chad, the manager at the Spokes bike shop about bringing the tandem in. Monday or Tuesday will be good. I have to call him Monday morning.

We discussed our schedule for the week. (Mothers Day celebration tomorrow. Call the bike shop, call the doctor at Georgetown University and visit the dentist on Monday. Visit the bike shop on Tuesday, Wednesday is open right now. Lisa's haircut on Thursday morning. Her sister arrives in the afternoon. Lisa's aunt and cousins arrive Friday. Her other cousins arrive on Saturday. The family reunion is Saturday or Sunday. We leave Sunday or Monday for New York.)

George went to have his tire fixed after finding a nail in it last night. Lisa, Adele and I went to a grocery store. Adele got food for dinner. Lisa and I got zip-lock bags and a few other things. We have to go to a drug store tomorrow.

We all got back in time for lunch about 3.

I took a short nap. Lisa prepared for Mother's Day.

At 5;30, Lisa's brother, Steven, came over. He recited some original poetry for us.

At 6:30, George's daughter, Kimberly, arrived. She's getting married in two weeks so we heard a lot about it.

We had a nice dinner together -- salmon, corn on the cob, salad and rolls. We visited until 10 when Kimberly left and George, Lisa and Steven took Steven home. I helped Adele clean up the table, then went to bed.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/14 Mothers Day -- Washington DC

Lisa and I woke up this morning and discussed how we would spend the day. This is the first Mothers Day that Lisa has been able to have with her mother in many years.

Our first plan was to make breakfast -- but Adele beat us to that. Lisa gave her mom a card she had made (That's a tradition in her family. That's why we don't own stock in Hallmark. :-)

We sat and talked half the morning, then Lauren called. The "girls" sat and talked the rest of the morning.

The weather was really pleasant. Saturday it felt like a hundred degrees out. Today it felt more like 75. Lisa and I went for a "shopping run." We stopped at Performance Bike Shop, bought a few things and ordered bike shoe covers to replace the one that disappeared. Then we went to a Rite-Aid and picked up a few things, then we headed home -- bags in hand. We ran about 4 miles.

Then Lisa made a shopping list so she could make a Mothers Day dinner. We brought everything home and Lisa started cooking. She made a simply delicious pasta dinner which we all enjoyed. Her brother, Steven, joined us for dinner.

We all talked about many things over and after dinner. Then George took Steven home, Lisa and Adele looked over some of Lisa's grade school records, and I finished putting our laundry away and started putting away the supplies we had bought.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/15 Rockville MD

Today was a busy day. I had an appointment with an Endodontist in the morning. Still trying to determine what tooth is giving me the pain with hot liquids. For an hour the dentist tried. Tapping, ice, heat -- nothing worked, so he sent me home with an appointment to come back Wednesday.

After lunch, Lisa and I both had appointments to have our teeth cleaned. Lisa came through with flying colors. I have a small cavity. The dentist said it could wait for a few months until I got home. I pointed out it would be close to eight months before I got home --so he, too, made an appointment for me to have that cavity fixed on Wednesday.

When we got back, we had to call our Tom Ford, our Financial Advisor, our attorney, Gary Brustin, and Dr. Hougan, the heart doctor at Georgetown University Hospital. Those calls brought on the need to make several more calls to California, including Kaiser and Dr. Moore at UCSF.

Finally, after dinner, we needed to go to another store and the local Kinko's to pick up a fax.

It ended up to be a late night.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/16 Rockville MD

Today was another busy day.

This morning, we took the tandem in to a good, local bike shop for maintenance work. This evening we got a call with lots of bad news. First, the rear wheel rim has some cracks. They don't have a Mavic 40-spoke rim so they'll have to order one. They don't have the WheelSmith D13 spokes. They don't have the tires I wanted. The front brake/shifter has to be replaced to get the flight deck to work. Other than that . . . Anyhow, they think the tandem will be ready Thursday afternoon. Unfortunately, Thursday morning, Lisa has an appointment to get her hair trimmed, then Thursday late afternoon, Lauren and kids will arrive.

After dropping the tandem off, we headed into Georgetown for lunch and my heart exam. We had Mexican food at a place right next to the C&O Canal.

While we were in Georgetown, we ran into several lemonheads. We found out that the Port of Baltimore will not release the gear-locker trucks until a $10,000 fee is paid. Tim is trying to get out of it. Meanwhile, no gear lockers. Bummer!

Then we went up to the hospital for my heart check. It turns out the heart specialist, Dr. Haugen, is the Chief Cardiologist for the Hospital, AND he is the head of the national committee that is running the study of the device used to close the hole in my heart. Well, after many, many tests, everything looks fine at first glance. He and his specialists will study the various diagnostic results in the next few days and will send me copies of their findings.

We returned to Adele & George's, had dinner, played a game of Boggle (we were skunked by Adele), then went to bed.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/17 Rockville MD

We were finally able to sleep late today. Got up at 8:45.

We had breakfast, then got ready for a run. Before we left. I packed more of the supplies we bought.

Then we went for a shopping-run of about 3-4 miles. Bought some energy bars from Trader Joe's and something for Adele, and headed back.

We showered and had lunch. Then I went for a shopping trip with George. By the time we got back, it was time for my visit to the dentist. We passed a discount shoe store on the way to the dentist, so while I had my tooth drilled, Lisa bought a pair of shoes. (Is that something like Nero fiddled while Rome burned??? Nawww.) My filling was quick and painless.

When we returned it was time for dinner. George and Adele took us to Chef Theo, a Greek restaurant, for a great buffet dinner.

Home for another game of Boggle. (I won the first -- Lisa won the rematch.) Then call my kids, then to bed.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/18 Rockville MD

Today was a another day to "get things done." First thing this morning, I worked on "stuff," like getting the car reservation confirmation, going over the tax returns, putting the bike rack on the car, getting ready to go to REI, etc.

While I was doing that, Lisa got a haircut and some special hair care stuff. Lisa came out of the hair stylist even more beautiful than when she went in.

Then we went to pick up the bike at one of the best bike shops in the East, the College Park Bike Shop. They fixed the Flight Deck problem (someone had drilled in the brake and shifting lever and caused the wires to be loose), replaced the entire rear wheel with a Mavic rim, WheelSmith spokes, and Hadley Racing Hub (the old, new rim was failing and the old hub was a bottom line Shimano hub), installed a new stoker seat that Lisa was impressed with, found a cracked derailer hanger and replaced it, replaced the tires and tubes, and did a general clean and tune job. We took the bike out for a test ride -- mostly to test the new seat. We rode about 20 miles around the area of College Park (which is the home of University of Maryland) and the neighboring cities. I think we're ready for another 10,000 miles.

Then we went to REI. We exchanged the backpack that had some failed compression straps. No problem at all. We also bought a new polertec 100 jacket, new gloves and a new hat for me. (Yes, we finally gave up on getting the old ones back that I had left in France.)

Then we came back tothe condo to meet Lauren, David and Sara, who were due to land at 4. They finally arrived about 6:30.

Steven came over and we all had dinner. Then we celebrated Steven's birthday. Then we talked a bit, talked some more, and talked a lot more.

About 11, Lisa, Lauren and the kids all went over to the Marriot where Lauren was staying. David wanted to work out on the exercise room. Sara wanted to go in the spa. Lisa wanted to catch up on the news with Lauren, so she spent the night there.

I stayed with George and Adele. I helped clean up the dining room, then did some straightening up in our room, then to bed.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/19 Rockville MD

For me this morning started with a call from Lisa (who was at the Marriott with her sister) asking if I wanted to go for a short run with them now. The answer was yes, but the logistics was so complicated, I opted out. Instead, I went on another "shopping run" on my own.

When I returned, I spent the rest of the morning getting gear sorted and ready to pack, and getting the gear bags re-waterproofed.

Lisa, Lauren, Dave (formerly known as David) and Sara showed up a little after noon. Lauren and Dave left to buy him a suit for his 8th grade graduation party. Lisa, Adele and Sara played card games. George and I read.

The Hensens -- Lita, Danny, Adrien and Mark -- arrived about 5. Lita was very excited about some presents that she had brought, so we all gathered together in the bedroom to see them.

She had hand-painted tee-shirts for those of us with birthdays close at hand. Each shirt had the individual's name along with an appropriate picture.

Dave's had a roller-blade hockey player; Sara's had a ballerina; The shirts for Lisa and I each showed a depiction of a couple riding a tandem over the top of the world. They're great!

Then we all indulged ourselves on the delicious dinner that Adele had prepared. Then we visited and caught up on with each other for the rest of the evening.

Lita was tired, so the Hensen's, the Lempert's and Steven all left about nine. We had just started a game of Boggle when the doorbell rang. It was Warren Hensen. He had just arrived from Chicago and came over to join the party. Of course, everyone else had left, so we all sat and visited while Warren had some of Adele's delicious lasagna.

Warren has his own computer maintenance business in Chicago. His office is located right in the heart if town. His work is so much in need, he is able to limit his customers to those that are located within walking distance -- about 6-8 blocks. Incredible!

Much later, Warren left, with plans to get together tomorrow for the big reunion picnic.

Lisa and I finally got to bed around midnight.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/20 Rockville MD

Today was the big day -- the Kass-Hensen family reunion. We started with the buffet breakfast at the Marriott (where all the out-of-town guests are staying.) That lasted a couple hours.

By one, we went back to George and Adeles condo. We spent the afternoon talking and playing party games.

The reunion was planned to be an outside picnic, however, the weather was overcast and rainy. Adele called Steven's condo to confirm the use of their recreation room (the alternate location in case of inclement weather) only to find that another tenant had taken over the room and the management wouldn't make them move.

Faced with a dilemma that could ruin the whole day, Adele was very resourceful. She checked with the new manager at her complex and arranged to use the resident's lounge for our party. With the addition of a few tables and chairs from another area, the lounge was a great location.

Adele had arranged for all the food, drinks and place settings. While she brought them down, we set up the tables and chairs. It was a wonderful reunion party -- and mostly due to Adele's hard work.

By eleven, the guests had left. Lauren gave Lisa and I and Steven a ride to his apartment so we could see it before we left. (It's a top floor unit. Very bright, clean and nice.)

Lisa and I walked the half-mile back to George and Adele's. Lisa sat and talked with Adele while I cleaned up the room, made up the bed, andd went to sleep.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/21 Rockville MD to New York NY

Today was moving-on day. Up at 8 to get cleaned up and packed. Over to the Marriot for another buffet brunch. Lotsa talk. Lotsa pictures.

Then back to Adele & Georges condo to rearrange and load the cars. Since Adrien invited us to stay at her place in Manhatten (which, by the way, is just nine blocks from the youth hostel where the Odyssey group is staying), it made sense for the three of us to travel together. But had Adrien come in Dan and Lita's car with Mark. They couldn't fit all of us in their car so David and Dee offered to take us all in their SUV.

We left about 1:30 for the 220 mile trip to New York. Arrived about 6:30. (We hit LOTS of traffic on the New Jersey Turnpike. It took about an hour and a half to cover twenty miles due to the center lane of three being closed.) We were all going to go out to dinner, but, because it was so late, David and Dee wanted to get on the road.

We loaded all our stuff, including our 7-foot tandem, into Adrian's apartment. That was somewhat of a challenge since Adrien's apartment is compact, comfortable -- and on the 4th floor. But we were able to get everything into the elevator. (Adrien called her elevator small, but it was twice the size of most of the elevators we've seen around the world.)

Adrien had a neat popourri of old photos on her wall that we really enjoyed. Most were of Adrien's family. A few included Lisa and Lauren.

We went to dinner at a neighborhood Chinese restaurant. I have to say, New York's reputation for having excellent Chinese food was upheld.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/22 New York, NY

We spent the evening visiting with Adrienne last night. This morning we organized our stuff, got our bike set to ride, and headed out.

We rode 96th Street over to Central Park. Then we rode the internal loop street all around the park. The internal streets were closed to vehicular traffic, so it was real nice -- just us and a hundred other bicyclers, joggers, strollers, walkers and sightsee. (No, as I think about it, we didn't see any roller-bladers.)

We peeled off onto Central Park North to our NYC Odyssey headquarters -- the Park View Hotel. We were fortunate. We were assigned a room for two. (Could have been four, six or eight.) The accomodations are basic -- a double bed, a big, funky dresser, a window, a single overhead light (in a paper chinese lantern-type shade) and a private bathroom down the hall. (I know, "private bathroom down the hall" sounds like an oxymoron. But the bathroom is just like one at home. It's off the hall, and it has a sink, a toilet, a shower and a locking door.)

We think it's a hostel in the making. It's a very old building -- 2-foot wide halls, walls and ceilings painted dark, heavy, primary colors, a bathroom and an unfinished kitchen off the hall for every 10 rooms or so.) It's in upper manhatten, close to a subway, though. A good base location for exploring NYC.

After check in, storing our bike in the basement, and checking out our room, we went for walk to find a restaurent for brunch. We choose a diner on 96th where we had matza ball soup and a Reuben sandwich.

We decided to either go to a movie or to rent a video for the evening. We walked back to Adrienne's apartment to call her and see if she wanted to join us. We were so late that she beat us there. After much talk, we decided to have dinner right there and spend the evening with her. Then we took a taxi back to the hotel.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/23 New York NY

Let's start with the excitement tonight. As Lisa and I were visiting in the lobby, the fire alarm wewnt off. Alarm lights started flashing and the alarm horn was going off.

Then water caming pouring from the recessed light fixtures over the registration desk. It was running onto the computers and monitors. Hotel staff put waste baskets out to catch the torrents coming through the ceiling light fixtures and ceiling cracks.

Riders started coming down the stairs. There was reports of smoke in the hall on the 3rd floor.

A shade hanging down from a ceiling light started filling with water. The hotel staff couldn't get it down, so they poked holes in it with a ballpoint pen.

Riders sat around the lobby talking and watching the action. We never saw the Fire Department. The hotel staff kept turning off the alarm. It kept coming back on.

Bottom line? Someone was cooking in one of the kitchens. They went back to there room and fell asleep. The stove overheated and set off the alarm and sprinklers.

We started the day with breakfast at "Emily's," the restaurant hired to provide meals for the Odyssey riders in New York. It was a good breakfast! All you can eat of OJ, pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage, potatoes, cereal and coffee.

Then we took the subway to Adrien's apartment to get her list of bike shops. We called several bike shops in our quest for a 28 tooth chain ring that would fit our bike. We ended up calling Larry and Jeff's 2nd Avenue Bicycle Plus where Adrienne had recently purchased her bike.

I talked to Larry. He knew what we wanted but didn't have one in stock. He asked how soon we needed it. (It normally takes a week to get such a part.) I timidly told him tomorrow. He said he'd check and call me back.

When he called back, he said he found one and that his wife would pick it up for him and have it here in about two hours. What service! We made plans to take the bike in tomorrow morning.

Then we hoped on the subway again and went downtown. We had lunch, then headed over to the United Nations building complex. We looked at childrens' art from around the world. Then we took a guided tour. It was an interesting visit.

We saw lots of beautiful art work that had been presented to the United Nations by individual countries. One of the most memorable was a pistol with the barrel tied in a knot. The caption was, "Let's talk about it."

We saw the Security Council Chambers, the Health and Economic Council Chamber, and the General Assembly Chamber. None of the meetings wee in session. In fact, if any were, we would not be able to visit them. Ever since the bombing at the World Trade Center 10 years ago, all sessions have been closed to the public for security reasons. Also since then, the only way to get into the buildings is with a guided tour. Again, for security.

We found out that John D. Rockefeller had purchased the land along the East River and donated it to the United Nations in 1945. He paid 8 1/2 million dollars for it. It's current worth more than $1.5 billion. We ended up at the UN gift shops where we bought and mailed several gifts.

Leaving there we decided to go to a movie. We bought a newspaper, decided to see Academy Award winning "American Beauty." I thought it was very "different" and a little weird -- but it was still fun. Of course, we had a giant size, buttered popcorn.

When we came out of the theatre, it was raining. We caught a subway (three transfers) back to our hotel and all the excitement.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/24 New York NY

First thing this morning Lisa and I met with Roma and Lynn to discuss the car. They were really excited about it. (Partially because seven of the next nine days are over 90 miles.

After breakfast, we rode our bike tp Larry & Jeff's @nd Avenue Bicycles Plus to get the 28 tooth gear. While we were there, Lisa found another bike seat she wanted to try out. We had both installed, then rode over to Adriennes.

We went on the subway down to the Battery (at the southern tip of Manhatten) area. Then we walked along a very nicely developed multi-use path along the Hudson river. Across the river is the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and New Jersey.

We stopped at a nice restaurant, the "SouthWest New York" which was right next to the World Trade Center. We had a "southeast" flavor lunch at an outside table overlooking the river.

After lunch we walked through the nieghborhoods on the Lower East Side. This is the oldest area of New York and the streets are very "old worldish" -- or, in other words, narrow.

We stopped in at the New York Historic Maritime Museum on the way over to the Seaport Village area. The Seaport Village was very touristy, so we took a bus up to the Chinatown area. We walked for blocks along Mott Street. The first several were about half tourist curio souvenier shops and half Chinese stores. The last several blocks were mostly chinese food stores.

Then we walked down Mulberry Street through Little Italy. That turned out to be mostly restaurants with a few souvenier shops and a few Italian food stores mixed in. The restaurants all looked very old-world Italian and very good. Too early for dinner, though.

Then it started to sprinkle. Remembering that last night the early sprinkle turned to a torrential downpour, we decided to cut short our walking tour of the neighborhoods and catch a subway back to Adrienne's.

For dinner, we went to a vegetarian place on Amsterdam in her upper west side area. After sad farwells, we headed back to our hotel.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/25 New York, New York City to Barryville via New Jersey

Today's ride was 110 miles -- hilly, windy and mostly through beautiful countryside. It started by crossing the George Washington Bridge. The route followed along the Hudson River, then crossed some countryside, picked up the Delaware River, amd followed it to Barryville.

Our morning started with a ride around Central Park. We wanted to try the new, 28-tooth chain ring. Most importantly, we wanted to thoroughly evaluate the new bike seat that Lisa bought yesterday.

After two trips around the park, Lisa said the seat wasn't so good. She wanted to put her new bat-seat back on so she could try that under the same riding conditions. I changed the seat, we did a few more laps around the park, Lisa was convinced that the bat-seat was better, so we swung by the bike shop and returned the newest seat.

We then rode back to Adrienne's, left the bike there and took a taxi over to pick up the rental car at National. No problems, only a concern -- the back seat does not fold down to give access to the trunk from inside the car. The attendent said that no American cars have fold-down back seats.

We drove over to the hotel to get our gear. I parked in front of the hotel in the yellow curb zone. (In California, that would be a loading zone.) We went in and got our gear, returned to the car, and there was a ticket on it. $55 for parking in a bus zone. Oh well. . .

Finally, about 12:30, we headed out. (We were scheduled to pick up Lynn and Roma around 3.)

We found Lynn right at three, She was sitting in a pretty little park along the side of the road in the Village of Suffern, New York (just across the New Jersey line.) She had had a wonderful day exploring villages, visiting bike shops and generally not worrying about how many miles she got done.

At 4, we caught up with Roma. She was at the check point. We loaded her bike, talked to Joan Dolinsky, and headed on down the road.

About 5:30 we got to the night's stopping place, the Kittatinny Campground, along the Delaware river. Lisa arranged for a room for the night at (the only) place around, the Heavenly Haven. We shared a room with Larry and Joan.

Tomorrow is our riding day. Lynn will be driving.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/26 New York, Barryville to Otega

Last night we shared a room with Larry and Joan at a very nice small motel in a very quiet woods. When I went to sleep at 10, it felt like home -- only a few crickets breaking the silence.

About midnight we were awakened by what sounded like an army celebrating the end of boot camp. Shouting, banging, loud laughter, running up and down the porch. Very quickly, we realized we had been invaded by a group of high schoolers, apparently celebrating the end of the school year.

I got up and stuck my head out the door. The only ones there then were two young men who were whooping, hollering and wrestling in the room next door. I asked them to cool it, telling them that we had a big bicycle ride tomorrow. The graciously apologized and said they would be quieter. And it was quieter for awhile.

Then more shouting and running up and down the porch. It was a differsnt group of wound up students. Larry got up this time and asked them to be quiet. This time it took on most of them. We finally were able to get some sleep.

This morning, we got up early because this was the first time with this car and this group, and we wanted to be ready for the 90 mile ride. We got to breakfast about 7, and were ready to ride about 8.

Our first stop was a "canal bridge" over the Delaware River -- yes, a bridge that was built to carry canal boats OVER the river. It was designed by Roebling, the same engineer who later designed the Brooklyn Bridge. The canal bridge served river boats for 40 years. Then it was abandoned. Then, in 1980, it was converted to a vehicular bridge. Since then the tow paths (the "sidewalk" along side where the mules walked when they towed the boats) have been reconstructed.

As we rode through the beautiful countryside of upstate New York, we came upon what looked like water spurting out of the side of a hill. As we got closer (and took a picture) we saw that it was water flowing from the side of the hill, down a small water fall, hitting a rock, and spurting straight out.

As we continued to go up and down the roller coaster hills, we came upon a 3-arch, stone bridge that dated back to colonial times. It sat amongst a small grove of trees and spanned a small stream. A VERY lovely setting. We could have sat and enjoyed that for hours -- but, we had to move on.

About noon, we passed through the very small village of Youngsville. There was not much to choose from there for lunch, so we agreed to go on to Livingston Manor, just 7 miles up the road. Under normal conditions, a 30 minute ride.

But today was anything but normal conditions. It had been very hilly all day, but nothing terribly hard. We figured the ride shouldn't take more than 45-50 minutes.

Then we turned a corner and started uphill. This was not your normal, everyday uphill. No siree! This was an uphill that made us wonder if our tires were flat, if our brakes were dragging, if the new tires were too heavy, or if we had somehow turned into total wimps because of our week off. Even with our new, lower, granny gear, we had to stop twice during this ride. We had never experienced a hill that steep in this whole year! It took us an hour and 40 minutes to ride that 7 miles -- and we were exhausted.

Well, we made it to Livingston Manor, had lunch there, and SAG'd with Lynn the rest of the way. When we got in, we found that there had been about 8,000 feet of climb that day. We found also, that MANY riders WALKED the hill that we struggled up. We felt better after that.

When we caught up with Roma, she was with Priscilla. Priscilla had made a lodging reservation in Oneonto, a town close to Otego. We got the info and called to see if there were two rooms available -- one for Roma, Priscilla, Lisa and I, and one for Larry and Joan. (They needed one to share with Larry's friend, Larry, who was coming to ride the next day with them.) We reserved two rooms.

When we arrived at the day's end, we found that Joan had also called around and found a cheaper hotel just 10 miles further up the road. We all had to decide -- which to keep?

We decided to to check Joan's place first. Then, if that were okay, we would call and cancel the others.

In the drive over, we found that Joan's place, while a little cheaper, was a LOT farther away. So we kept one room there for Joan, Larry and Larry, and we stayed at the motel that Pricilla had reserved that was three towns closer.

We went back to camp for dinner. It was prepared and served by the members of the Otega United Methodist Church in the church basement. What a spread! There was roast beef, vegetable lasagne, green beans, baked potatos (with butter and sour cream if we wanted), mixed green salad, fruit salad, and the coup de grase, vanilla ice cream on a chocolate fudge brownie with chocolate fudge topping. Like I said, WHAT A SPREAD!!

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/27 New York, Otego to Verona

We found out today that YESTERDAY we had ridden across most of the Catskill Mountains. As I said yesterday, they were green, beautiful, and STEEP. Lotsa climbing.

Todays ride was "relatively" flat -- relative, that is, to yesterday mountain climbing route. Lots more remote and beautiful countryside. Lots of green. Lots of running water. Lots of small towns.

This being the first day of memorial day weekend, everyone was pretty laid back. Lisa and I stopped many times to "smell the flowers" and visit with local folks.

It was a beautiful day. We started in light fog which gave away to partially cloudy which finally turned to clear blue skys. The route, though quite hilly, was only 73 miles long.

Tonight folks are camping at a KOA. Lotsa facilities -- lotsa kids. Lisa and I are again sharing a room with Priscilla and Roma. Larry and Joan are sharing a room with their friend Larry, who, by the way, did excellent in the ride today. They all three rode the entire route.

Love to all, David and Lisa

05/28 Verona NY to Ivy Lea, Ontario, Canada

Today was our turn to drive so we had free choice of where, when and how far to ride. Lisa discovered that we were close to the historic Erie canal. We realized this was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity so we decided to take the time and ride along the canal for starters.

We saw Joan, Larry, Lynn (Miller), Roma (Montoya) and Priscilla (Spencer) off this morning, then we discovered that we had a flat tire. After fixing the tire, we remembered that we still had a room available, so we headed there first. We hung out there for a while then headed out to find the canal.

We found the "historic" Erie Canal. We rode many miles on the tow path along the canal, then we turned around and came back.

On the way back, we spotted a sign to "Lock 21 1 mile" so we rode out to see it. It turned out to be a lock on the New York Canal System. We watched two luxury yachts being raised, then we headed back to the car.

We got to the car, started to load it, and discovered -- no key. After looking all over (for about 15 minutes or so), we decided that I had locked the keys in the trunk. We then spent another ten minutes or so trying to get into the trunk. Being unsuccessful, we then started to look for a phone to call AAA for assistance.

Just as we decided to go to the house across the street, a lady drove up. She asked if we had left some keys at the lock. It turned out she had seen us there, then saw the keys on the ground where our bike was parked. What a lifesaver! She drove Lisa back to retrieve the keys and we were on our way.

The route today was advertised as 103 miles -- but it measured 114 miles. It was, again, through the beautiful, rural roads of upstate New York.

We picked up Lynn about 3 o'clock. She had quite an unusual experience. She met some bird watchers along the road. She stopped to talk. They found out she was from Colorado and mentioned that they had just ordered a bird book from the Colorado Autobohn Society. Lynn said she had rented her house to a woman who worked for the Autobohn Society. Well, cutting a long story short, it turned out that the two women were one and the same. What a small world!

We picked up Roma about 4 and headed for Ivy Lea. We followed I-81 across two high bridges into Canada. Right at the border is an area called Thousand Islands. What an incredible sight we had from the bridges of the many small, green islands strewn throughout the St. Lawrence River waterway! A very beautiful sight.

While the campers stayed at a muddy and cold KOA back in the woods, we stayed at the Glen House Resort, a premium, luxury resort right on the river -- and for less than $35 American. This an area -- and a place -- we will consider returning to.

Love to all, David and Lisa

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