This morning, I met Earl at the hostel. He was staying at the hostel, checking out the area as a possible future place to live. He was originally from New Jersey, but lived all over in the newspaper business. At one time, he set the graph of the DJIA in the Wall Street Journal. He also spent time at papers in Northern California, Oregon, and Washington. He does exercises every morning, and rides a bike, too. Since he was going to Starbucks across the street, I tagged along, and got my breakfast there.
From the Zen Hostel, it was easiest to follow Highway 26 all the way to Melrose, and pick up the ACA trail, there. Good shoulder, easy riding. Humid.
Hey, Earl, maybe this is where you should move to.
At Melrose, I stopped at a grocery store. It was only 11 am, but I decided to eat. Had 1/4 of a watermelon, and pork riblets.
Across the street was Dollar General. After topping off my water bottle, I got an Outshine Coconut Popsicle.
6 miles later, at Putnam Hall, I was going to get the 20 oz Gatorade from the cooler for $1.49. But then I noticed that any size drink from the fountain was 99 cents, so got 44 oz of Gatorade there. I put half of it in my water bottle. Generally, I wouldn’t stop after such a short distance, but I needed to use the restroom, anyway.
Part of the route included a 13-mile bike path paralleling Hwy 100. Notice the wet spots from intermittent rain.
Rain came and went after Putnam Hall, but was never very hard.
It’s dead, but was this snake the poisonous kind?
The Budget Inn was right on the route. I like motels that have weekly and monthly rates, suggesting they are lower-priced. It was $55 including tax. One of the better places I’d stayed at.
Just a quick shot of my spacious $55 room. Unusual paint scheme. Tile floor throughout. Clean bathroom, and all the fixtures worked well. I couldn’t stand far back enough to show the desk I used for blogging – it had convenient outlets built right into the side. The wi-fi was 8/5 Mbps. No coffee in the room, no tissues, no ice, and of course, no breakfast in the morning. All of the things I needed, and none of the things I didn’t.
I went to Wendy’s across the street to get a Frosty, then back to the motel to shower. It had started raining lightly, but I was determined to make it to the buffet two blocks down.
Had to try this $7.99 buffet. I went in with low expectations.
Lots of people were eating there, a good sign.
It was decent. Minimal salad bar with lettuce, tomatoes, and fruit. Cold shrimp and mussels (I only took one of each). Didn’t even touch the sushi, as it was rather basic. But hey, remember that the whole thing is $8.
This is another of the 4 main food aisles. I had very little meat, but tons of rice and vegetables. Didn’t want to get weighed down. There was also ice cream in a freezer which people could scoop for themselves.
For the first time on this trip, I’m closer to the Atlantic Ocean than the Gulf of Mexico. Tomorrow, I will head for St. Augustine, the terminus of the Southern Tier. I’d like to stay at the Pirate Haus Hostel, but was only able to leave a message by phone, and online, the booking sites say that tomorrow is unavailable. I’ll have to physically go by and see. Worst case, I’ll find a motel room.
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