We got some much needed sleep at the Sleep Inn in Danville, VA after our 90 mile ride. We rolled out of town through the River Walk Trail which was beautiful but a little muddy at times. The fun quickly turned into a hot, windy ride along Hwy 29.
The first 15 miles of the day was the hardest! As we headed towards Greensboro a friend of mine texted me saying they had a friend in Winston Salem that might be able to give us a place to stay. This was enough incentive to adjust our route and get on a new road with less cars buzzing by at 90 miles per hour. The shoulder was huge so don’t worry!
Scenic back roads led us out of Virginia and into North Carolina. It’s amazing how far from home we’ve come by bike! We road through a very small town called Riedsville. Hot and tired we were ready to eat just about anything but we held out for a BBQ spot that was supposedly the best in town. Just past the downtown area we found Short Sugar’s BBQ. The sign outside read “Do Something Kind For Someone Else Today” so we must be in the right place!
Just when I thought there couldn’t be any more signs that we were on the right path, some friends commented on Facebook saying that they were in Winston Salem for the night for a bday party and would go ahead and book us a room. This was so strange it gave me chills because Paige and Curtis are the same couple that we randomly met in a parking lot outside of Princeton, NJ and let us stay at their house on the very first night of our journey 10 days ago.
It not only gave us the encouragement to push on and another 50 miles in just 4 hours but also it turned out that every hotel room in the city was booked because of an air show convention happening this weekend!
At 8pm we limped into the hotel after Dave fixed another flat tire and Shane had a wobbly wheel and we all were so exhausted from our second longest day yet, 81 miles! That’s a total of 670 miles in 10 days!
As we sat at dinner and read the link to the Southside Messenger, our first press coverage, I was reminded that our journey is totally worth the pain and getting back on the bike day after day no matter how hard. Paige and Curtis came to join us for 15 minutes at the restaurant and we shared our stories and some laughs together. It’s so nice to see familiar faces after being on the road for so long. They are so kind and just all around good people and we are so blessed they have come into our lives. We told the waitress about how we met this nice couple and her response was “wow there really are good people in the world”.
This journey seems impossible but so do many journeys we each face in our daily lives. When I had the urge to ride my bike across the country I knew I would come across helping hands along the way and that it would not be possible without them. Knowing how to give and receive help is a crucial skill to have if you want to be happy in this life.
I also knew that social media would increase my chances of connecting with good people so thank you all for keeping up with the posts. A Street Soccer Sacramento player commented on our post yesterday asking what my thoughts are on the soccer ball that I stare at 1000 times a day as I pedal.
Well the ball keeps me focused! I’m not visually focused on the ball because I am mostly watching for cars and pot holes and road treats and a million other things. It keeps me focused on the mission of the trip. It’s not about us and the miles we ride or the cool selfies we take. It’s about raising awareness for Street Soccer USA. It’s about encouraging others to take opportunities outside of their comfort zone or try to accomplish something outside the realm of possibility. It’s about proving that there are good people in the world and that if we all take a second to do something kind for someone the world would be a much happier place.