Today, I rode downstream, then back up the free river, with a stop at Mr. Bonner's Bench.
I found, in my trip up the free river, that the Rock Street foot bridge project was well under way. They had moved the detour sign, and while I was photographing the workers in action, a group of cyclists happened by, who discovered an easy detour around the construction, so I followed them.
After passing the Old Cemetery, I rode up to Chautauqua Park, a place I'd never seen before, and may not need to see again.
After stopping for a while at Julie's barber shop, I cruised the east side to the IOOF cemetery. My goodness, a lot of dead people live in our little town. I had never had any idea it would be so big.
Tomorrow, I think I'll go upstream. It's more fun. Yesterday, my wife, who had gotten up quite early, suggested I go out earlier than usual. I thought that might be a good idea, and decided to try to fit a cap under my helmet, to help ease the burden of the slotted exposure of my scalp to the sun. That same wife suggested I use a handkerchief. My goodness, where does she get all that smart? If you've never tried it, it's a great way to keep the sun from shining through the helmet's slots and heating up your head.
As I was pushing my bike up the killer hill, whom should I encounter but the robust young woman I usually see who always says "Sure is hot today"? But yesterday was an hour earlier than usual, and she just said "Hi!" I didn't get to return the greeting with my usual, "It'll be hotter later today". I wonder who's at her house to tell her it would be a good idea to start early?
I rode to the cove, and went up into the cove quite a way. Then, I thought, "What the heck!" I'm a cautious bicyclist, but I'd recently learned that a little flat ledge along the lake shore about 18"-48" wide, made for an easy ride with my all-terrain bike. Why couldn't I do it here? I found out that I couldn't, really. Things went well for a little way, but suddenly, the bike stopped short against a rough place, and I didn't. I have "almost" taken headers before, but I think this is the first time I'd ever actually gone over the handle bars. I also threw my chain in the process, and had to stop to set it back on track. Something about that day, a Friday, not exactly a weekend, but the banks of both sides of the cove seemed to be crowded with fishermen, and, of course, I assumed that they were all looking at, and laughing at, me.
I sedately pushed the bike until I reached the "riding" ledge at the flint beds, and rode from there. Lo and behold, about halfway along the ledge, I met two cyclists coming toward me. I rode off the ledge onto the slope, which ends abruptly at a 12 foot drop into the drink. The slope was very gentle at this part, but I was very grateful to the lady member of the pair, who trailed slightly behind her mate. She stopped and moved her bike to the uphill side of the ledge so that I could get back up before the slope became a little bit more than I cared to deal with. As I thanked her, she said she was also somewhat squeamish about the slope in that area.
They must have looped around soon after riding the ledge, because they overtook and passed me as I was taking a water break at the top of the killer hill.
I saw this couple later as they had stopped at the rest rooms at the crossroads. I should have stopped and asked, but since I didn't, I'll always wonder, "Could they be the "crossroads" couple?" They certainly could be.
When I got home, that same practical woman who had made me leave early, before it got too hot, and also had given me the handkerchief idea, saw a few bloody scrapes on my arm, and made me clean them up. That I can't explain, but I guess it's a "gal" thing.