Saturday, August 11, 2012

Day Four; Folkston to Odum Georgia - 87.37 miles, average speed 12.1 mph


Left Folkston (Relax Inn, formerly Days Inn) at 7:35. Had slept well and long. Felt mildly ill, but this passed after eating leftover pizza and drinking nearly frozen Pepsi. The mini-refrigerator was extremely efficient.

Had to ask directions from sheriff’s deputy directing school traffic but was soon on track. The prescribed route uses all rural roads and some are extremely rural to the point that if I fell over it might be hours or days, even, before anyone passed by to notice me. Fortunately, most of the pavement was well maintained, so making time was easy until the weather changed. Thunderstorms in the area sent headwinds and crosswinds solely to frustrate me.

Twenty miles northeast of Folkston I stopped at a store that was at least one step back in time. The intersection of County Road 252 and Old 259 had no name. Whether the name on a sign hanging from the building was the name of the business was questionable. Ponderosa did not fit and I did not ask. The lady behind the counter regaled me with questions I could answer and answers to questions I did not ask. On Thursday nights the Ponderosa also serves ribs and I bet they’re damn good.

As I ate my iced honey bun and drank my YooHoo I wondered about the clientele of this place in the middle of somewhere Georgia. 

The most interesting thing I saw in these many woodland miles was recently killed wild hog. It was large enough to make me wonder what hit it and did not end up in the ditch. It was a big, fierce looking animal. Dead on the road is about the only way I ever want to see another wild hog

Atkinson, Hortense and Patterson were not significantly more impressive the area around the Ponderosa and the weather was worse. Light, sometimes drizzling rain dampened my clothes but not my spirit. I did decide I had enough of woods by the time I reached the agricultural area between Patterson and Odum. Soon got tired of fields of cotton, too.

I covered more than 80 miles again and did so without great difficulty. Tired, yes. Worn out, no. I become saddle sore about 50 miles into the ride, in part because of bad timing for one of those irritating sore spots that appeared before I departed. I think zinc oxide will ultimately dry it and reduce that part of the saddle soreness. The Brooks B-17 works as it is supposed to. So does the bike and the tires. And the bags. The pilot remains the weakest part.

So, here I am in Odum , Georgia, without a place to stay. Three people suggested the Recreation Area. A lady inside the hall associated with the area said she saw me as she drove into town and had she known then I could have pitched my tent in her yard. Wonder if she would have fed me, too?! She offered that if I stayed around tomorrow I could join the group for whom she had rented the hall and she’d have good food then.

One of the frequent things people say about touring is that you meet interesting and helpful people. That is certainly true so far. From the Italian families to the working class hero at the local store who called a friend to try to locate another campground to the lady in the rec hall, everyone has been at least interesting.

Tomorrow? It’s less than 80 miles to Statesboro. Why not?

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