|Distance||101.46 kms||62.76 miles|
|Climbed||730 meters||2,395 feet|
|Ride time (hours)||6.77||-|
|Avg speed||14.9 kph||-|
|Distance||23,623.98 kms||14,679.27 miles|
|Climbed||251,288 meters||824,436 feet|
|Ride time (hours)||1,689.67||-|
Wednesday, March 19th, 2014
It is freezing cold this morning but it warms up quickly. I pack up and leave the campground without seeing anyone. It is hard to get motivated for this ride, I know I'm in for a long day of headwinds, bad roads, trucks, and run-down dusty little towns. Nothing appears during the day to disabuse me of my preconceived ideas of the place.
Close to one of these little towns I hear brakes lock up in the oncoming lane. Then a thud. I look up to see that a pickup truck has run over a dog. The truck keeps going, leaving the badly mangled mutt by the side of the road. I go over to him, he is in really bad shape and doesn't have long to live. He is whimpering and looking up at me with pleading eyes. It occurs to me that maybe I should break his neck to put him out of his misery but I just don't have it in me. I feel helpless, I know he's a gonner but I want to do something. I talk to him for a minute then I go on my way with a heavy heart and not a little guilt.
The biggest problem for me with bicycle travel is the amount of time one has to think. Events become "sticky". If I had seen a dog get run over while living the life of routine, I would have gotten back in my car, checked the iphone or whatever, maybe called someone, gone back to work... soon I would be thinking of something else and not feeling the impact. Not so on the bike, I've got all day to think it over and today this dog sticks in my mind.
I continue. Into the wind, dodging traffic when there is no shoulder, stopping occasionally to rest and drink water. The road heads inland later in the day. More climbing through some hills and valleys with vineyards. I arrive in San Vicente and decide to get a cheap room and call it a day. There are lots of rough-looking farm workers in this town. They aren't really rough, they just look the part because of their dirty and tattered clothes. Heck I fit the bill in that department as well. I have tacos at a stand and shoot the shit with a few them. They are migrants from El Salvador working the fields while they plan their crossing into the U.S.