Took my iPhone 5s to the Apple Store today and they replaced it quickly and easily. I got my pictures that I took back too. Back to the bike ride.
My Ford Ranger air bag light came on so I took it to the dealership to get repaired. They said it would take a couple hours to get fixed. A perfect opportunity for a bike ride.
I had never been to Norwalk and knew it to be a ways away so I dropped the car off and headed west. I took Route 18 even though it is 55 mph with a lot of traffic. The streets of Wellington are wide with big beautiful houses. I love the town and admired the houses as I rode out of town. It wasn’t long before I was out of town and each mile the field grew bigger with old farm houses farther apart.
Being raised by an agoraphobic I never realized how isolated I had been. I’ve never gone west this way. I love the open road.
Finally I came to my first town, Brighton. Brighton is just a crossroad with a church and gazebo. Brighton has a population of 942.
Church where I went for water
Not a lot to see. I took a short break in Brighton and moved on. There was a lot less traffic and the weather was terrific. Miles passed quickly. Before I knew it I was in Clarksfield.
Clarksfield is another small town with no real town. Just a couple old buildings and a church. According to Wikipedia the township has a population of about 1500. It looked like a nice place to live.
Really bad picture of a church in Clarksfield
A sign said that Norwalk was twelve miles farther and I probably should have turned around but it was such a nice day I had to do it. I kicked it into high gear and moved on. There was nothing here at all. Just fields.
I was getting low on water as I only (stupidly) brought one bottle). I saw a motorcycle club up ahead and stopped in but no one was there. From the lettering on the door they were obviously nice fellas.
I was out of water and getting tired. Normally I ride twenty-five miles at a time and I had nearly done that. I was getting closer to Norwalk. I could tell. Also I noticed large numbers of motorcyclists out and about.
At the outskirts of Norwalk I came up what I though was a house and then I realized it was a diner. The only way I realized was the people in the parking lot.
The Star Diner
I went in and down a couple of waters and ordered eggs and toast. This was a nice little place. Probably fit twenty people at most. There were a lot of bikers in there and after striking up a conversation I found out it was bike week in Norwalk. That explained it. I had a nice meal and refilled my water bottle. That is when I realized my phone wasn’t working. Both the GPS and the actual phone wasn’t working.
Misspelled Courteous: Plus I had better be nice
I headed off into Norwalk. I breezed through downtown with the big buildings and once through town I stopped on the steps of a church. I planned to check out the map on my phone and see if I could take a different way back. Out of nowhere a woman came over and asked if I was ok. She saw me put the bike down and then sit down. She was afraid I was having a heart attack. She had one twenty years ago and wanted to make sure I wasn’t having one. I was fine but took her bottle of water. We talked and I found out she used to live in Avon Lake in the seventies and eighties. She told me her old address and I realized that I used to deliver there when I worked at UPS. It’s a small world.
I was beat and needed to head home. I didn’t end up taking any pictures of Norwalk. The only one I could find on Flickr that would allow to be copied was this one by David Wilson:
At the church I realized that my phone wasn’t working properly. I couldn’t pull up my map and the agaraphobic raised part of me got a little anxious. I decided to just take 18 back home. Off I went. After a few miles I realized that I didn’t recognize any of it. Then I saw the sign for East Townsend. I didn’t go through it to get to Norwalk so I realized that I was on Route 20. Route 20 runs about five miles north of Route 18 and each mile I rode on it I was getting farther away from Route 18.
East Townsend was little more than a fire station. The township itself has a population of about 1500 people. I headed south on the very next road that I came to. At first there were a couple of McMansions but a couple miles farther down the road it was desolate. I wasn’t even sure if I was on the right road to where I wanted to be. I could feel a twinge of anxiety. There was nothing and finally I could see Route 18 in the distance.
Once back on Route 18 I was tired. I made through Clarksfield and took a long break at Brighton. I had seen a water spigot at the church and stopped to find a lock on it. Damn, I was out of water. Oh well.
I was beat and a couple times cars had got behind me and laid on their horns and one truck waited until he got right behind me and laid on his air horn, then he passed me a little too closely. I got his truck number and will call his company on Monday.
I finally made it back to Wellington. I stopped at a convenience store and bought a well deserved root beer. While drinking it a biker came up on a Harley. After getting his drink he told me that he rides too and has a Cannondale.
I ended up riding 50.5 miles in 4 hours and 10 minutes. It was a great day for a ride and a great ride. It was a little more than I should have done, but I’m glad I did it.