Miles to Date: 846
May 19, 2015 – Sun, clouds and thunderstorms, 75 degrees
Linda Turner, my warmshowers host, fried up hash browns, steak and eggs. Over breakfast she shared her explorations in genealogy – up to ten generations back through some branches of her family. She has connected relatives that didn’t know each other existed, bridged gaps that occurred when so many died in the 1918 influenza, held a reunion for more than 200 people from the ‘Murphy’ branch, and traced her ‘Adams’ connection back to our founding father. Linda demonstrated the amazing array of historical resources she uses on line and contributes her own findings with sites documenting her family roots.
The day started muggy. I encountered a cooling light rain as I headed west. When I stopped at Apple Betty’s for lunch, the waitress told me I had just missed a huge downpour. Good thing I made a late start; also good that I ordered Apple Betty’s namesake dessert, which was terrific.
I spent the afternoon at the Oneida Community Mansion and had a fascinating discussion with Executive Director Patricia Hoffman about the impact of the Oneida Community on the nineteenth century utopian movement and what their legacy means for tomorrow.
By the time I began my late afternoon ride, the storms had passed, the air was crisp, the farms lush, the birdsong delightful. I meandered on country roads in a south and west direction, clinging to river valleys except for one questionable turn that took me up a wicked step hill. Eventually I returned to U.S. 20, which I had left yesterday, and pedaled the long rolling hills into Cazenovia.
John Cawley, my warmshowers host, lives in an incredible Civil War era building called Stone Cottage that sits at the very end of Main Street, overlooking Lake Cazenovia. We visited in his living room, which has the most incredible crown molding – made of wood – I’ve ever seen. Then he cooked spaghettis with meatballs, offered me Yuengling, then ice cream. We took his dog Teddy for a walk along the lake at sunset, and when I climbed into my period four-poster bed, I fell into solid sleep.