Palatka, to St. Augustine, FL
Grand Total: 3075!!!
OHHHH What a day!!
I nearly skipped to breakfast I was so excited. I wanted to savor and enjoy every possible moment of the day. Just as I had done for 50+ days, I packed up my bags for the last time, and hauled them into the trailer. Grabbed something to eat – admittedly not much- but needed some fuel, as we were riding 45 miles!! After breakfast I went back to my room and grabbed my bike and helmet – took one last glance around and headed to the parking lot. I skipped the snack table, and realized belatedly, that I had not topped off the air in my tires. So maybe, I did not do the same thing I had done every day and this day would be a little different.
We headed out of Palatka and quickly found ourselves making turns on quiet country roads. We rolled in at 20 for our final SAG- topped off water bottles and headed to the fire station to assemble for our final 7 miles, which we would travel as a group.
At the fire station we were met by Brian, our police escort and went over the details of our arrival. We were also told that a short distance from the fire station their would be quite a bit of police activity as their was currently a “police action” ongoing – as some type of warrants were being issued. Okay!
We lined up in pairs. Tanya and I decided that we should finish as we started at the end! I told her that we were not the end – but that we should think of it as if we were dessert! Being the teacher’s pet/brown nose/kiss ass that I admittedly am – this worked out perfect — right in front of us were our terrific SAG drivers Carolyn and Nancy and riding sweep was our guide and chief keeper – Carol and our talented Chef- Patty.
Brian led us out and we headed toward Anastasia State Park . I was enjoying every moment and so excited to see my family and friends. Plus blowing through all of the red lights was great.
When we made the turn into the park their were several hoots and whoops! But the nervous chatter that had accompanied us (and the singing of Happy Birthday to Cathy) had turned into quiet sound of pedaling and anticipation!
I thought I would cry – but I was just so very happy to be completing this most amazing and challenging journey. Seeing my crazy welcoming committee decked out with balloons and banners and crazy champagne glasses was tremendous! I could not get off my bike quickly enough Hugs, taps and kisses all around.
After our greeting we headed down to the beach to dip our tires for our official finish.
Such a great day. I will share some final thoughts on my next blog post – not sure i will be able to articulate all of the emotions and thoughts – but i will try! And they are sweet!!!