August 22, 2015 – Hazy, 80 degrees
Miles Today: 25
Miles to Date: 6,070
States to Date: 22
I meandered out of Wenatchee for an easy travel day and some fun touring along the way. First stop climbing the Wenatchee River Valley: Aplets Candy Factory and Store in Cashmere. Their harvest bars are without doubt the best energy bars I’ve ever eaten, so I added a dozen to my pack.
Back on US 2 outside of Cashmere I met up with Peter, the cross-country cyclist I connected with a few days ago. He was travelling with Brian, a guy doing the perimeter of the United States, and a third cyclist. As we chatted, Matt, the British cyclist I stayed with last night, caught up with us. The end of summer is near, and folks with Seattle as their terminus are zeroing in on their destination.
We disbanded to all ride at our own pace, but four us met again at the McDonalds in Leavenworth. They were heading over Stevens Pass today; I am waiting until tomorrow. I’ll see Brian again for sure; we both have the same warmshowers host tomorrow night in Sultan. The long distance cycling community is a small, tight world.
What can I say about Leavenworth, WA? To call this pretend Bavarian town kitsch is an understatement. But that doesn’t stop us from flocking here on a summer Saturday to stroll the three blocks along Front Street, eat all kinds of festival food and shop. The town is festive, the people watching superb.
I made special effort to go to the Nutcracker Museum. Truly a gem of a place. Perhaps my next major trip will be to visit every $5 museum in America. Each delivers a half hour of fascinating insight into the peculiar human fetishes. The Nutcracker Museum has thousands of nutcrackers, useful and ornamental, sentimental and political, austere and sexual. The proprietress at the register in her long Martha Washington gown and bobbed white hair is as much part of the experience as any wooden-jawed statue.
My warmshowers host, Kristin, is a waitress, so she asked me to come in the afternoon and visit before she headed out to work. Like many who choose to live in a resort area, Kristen has an assortment of odd jobs to cobble a living. She drove me up Icicle Road through a beautiful valley. We traded stories while she showed me houses she cleans and fed horses she tends. After she went to work, her neighbor Sally brought dinner over for me.
My bicycle is so much more than a vehicle to take me from A to B. It’s my conduit into people’s lives and the key that unlocks their generosity.
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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