Trip Log – Day 16 – Ithaca NY to Corning NY

Screen Shot 2015-05-20 at 12.30.25 PMMiles Today: 49

Miles to Date: 954

May 21, 2015 – Overcast then clearing, 50 degrees

 

I considered biking back into Ithaca to breakfast at the 24-hour deli, but was more intrigued by moving ahead, even though the next sizable town was over twenty miles. I navigated Ithaca’s big box strip on NY 13 south, and then veered west up a major hill. Thank to the glaciers thousands of years ago, cycling in the East is very predictable: valleys run north/south, so you’ve got to climb and descend when travelling west. In this part of New York, the rise and falls are long, several miles up and then as many down into the next valley.

A light rain fell as I ascended a long hill. I saw a sign for Newbridge, a small town off the main road, and detoured in search of breakfast. I was rewarded with the Varietywich at the Newbridge Cafe: steak and egg with cheese, mushrooms, onions and bacon on a bagel. I met Freddie, who tosses papers three hours a day and loves his job; Nikki, a gas jockey at the local Mobil; and Bridie, the friendly cashier who retired from working for the county, and has been working the cafe counter for sixteen years. “You’ve got to get out. Working here, you meet people.”

By the time I left, full, and pedaled past the covered bridge for which Newbridge is named, the sun started to peak through. My massive breakfast sandwich fueled me all the way to Corning. Trivia of note:

IMG_1913Exquisite Gothic gingerbread architecture

IMG_1914Small waterfalls along the road only people at bicycle speed can appreciate

IMG_1919

 

 

 

 

Highway crews installing new guard rails. No work is done by hand anymore.

IMG_1918Empty ice cream stands due to the unseasonably cold weather

IMG_1921

 

 

Very effective Interstate highway barrier through the town of Horseheads; I couldn’t hear any traffic noise

IMG_1922The gorgeous Chemung River Valley in Corning

 

 

 

 

I arrived shortly after one, and settled into a McDonald’s for an Internet session. McDonald’s is a mid-day haven for cyclists. Fast and free Internet, pleasant interiors that are never crowded, the folks you meet are the full cross-section of humanity, and I am a sucker for the $1 soft drinks or $1 cone. Audie, my counter help, was about the friendliest person I ever met. I spent over two hours catching up with the world electronically, and enjoying her boisterous banter. I was reminded of Dean Freidman’s song:

I am in love with the McDonald’s Girl
She has the smile of innocence oh so tender and warm.
I am in love with the McDonald’s Girl
She is an angel in a polyester uniform

When I left, after four, I realized that my motel was a ways out of town. Luckily, I passed a great looking barbeque joint on the way and stopped for an awesome early dinner. By the time I got to Corning Inn, I was content to settle in for the night.

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About paulefallon

Greetings reader. I am a writer, architect, cyclist and father from Cambridge, MA. My primary blog, theawkwardpose.com is an archive of all my published writing. The title refers to a sequence of three yoga positions that increase focus and build strength by shifting the body’s center of gravity. The objective is balance without stability. My writing addresses opposing tension in our world, and my attempt to find balance through understanding that opposition. During 2015-2106 I am cycling through all 48 mainland United States and asking the question "How will we live tomorrow?" That journey is chronicled in a dedicated blog, www.howwillwelivetomorrw.com, that includes personal writing related to my adventure as well as others' responses to my question. Thank you for visiting.
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