Bethesda, Maryland

Greetings from Bethesda! We’re enjoying a great visit with Steve’s cousin Jean, her husband Mike, their son Aaron, and daughter-in-law Michaela. It has been almost too many years to count since the last time we saw Jean and Mike. In fact we’re thinking it could be at least 23 years or so. In any case, it’s been lovely catching up with them. We all agree that it is definitely time for a family reunion on Steve’s Dad’s side of the family as well.

This afternoon we make our way to enjoy lunch with Steve’s high school/college friend Don and his wife Vanice. Then we’re onto Paoli, PA.

For Steve it’s kind of a relief to not be on a bike right now. He’s enjoying some extra sleep and R&R time. I had a break in driving yesterday as he took over at the wheel for awhile.

Love to all…Diane

Wow…wow…wow!

Okay, I’m a little lost for words right now, so please accept “Wow” as my word for the day. Yes, at 7:50 A.M., Eastern Daylight Savings Time, Steve dipped his front tire in the Chesapeake Bay at Yorktown, Virginia. Was it salt water so he could say that it “counted” as the coast you ask? You bet. I stuck my finger in the water and did a taste test.

Right now we’re in the Williamsburg, Virginia Public Library each at a computer checking out the website. We thank Jeremy and Stephanie for keeping the postings going the last few days and for Jeremy’s time in updating the map. In a few minutes we are driving to Bethesda, Maryland to spend the night with Steve’s cousin, Jean, and her husband, Mike. Tomorrow we’ll lunch with friends, Don and Vanice, before driving onto Paoli, PA. In Paoli we’ll overnight with Holly, Rob, Tim, and Brent. Then…on Wednesday morning we’ll head to Ligonier, PA to visit my cousins, Linda and John, and hopefully others in that area. We hope to return home on either 8/18 or 8/19.

Since I wrote last time, I saw Drew and Blake off at the Knoxville airport. We had to get up at 3:30 a.m., so it was a long day!! After they were in flight, I made my way to Blackburg, VA where I had a lovely lunch and visit with cousin Irene and her daughter Lisa, son-in-law Paul, their kids Ellen, Greg, and Jeff, and Paul’s mother, Nancy. It had been many years since I saw Lisa and her family, so I soaked in this brief visit.

From Blacksburg, Va, I drove onto Charlottesville, where Steve had been the prior two nights. I stayed with his sister, Polly, and brother-in-law, Glen. It was great to catch up with them and chat away! The visit was just too brief this time, so it’ll be nice to see them next spring for J.R.’s graduation from UVA. Last night Polly & Glen drove me past the dorm where J.R. will live this year and the house that Mary will share with friends. I left yesterday morning after Polly and Glen took me to breakfast at Panera’s and for a drive out to sister Meri’s project, where she’s the architect. Leaving Charlottesville, I headed onto scenic by-ways going eastward and finally came across a handsome bicyclist wearing his Ride the Rockies jersey. Alas, after nearly 3 weeks we meet again!

Steve looks great. This ride must have been the ingredient to the Fountain of Youth, for I believe he has stripped years from his appearance. Now we both are taking a very deep breath of relief for having the bike ride over. We also say, “Thank you Lord!” for a safe journey for him and me. And, we also say “Thank you” to all of you for your love, prayers, hugs, phone calls, emails, and all around encouragement. We could not have undertaken this adventurous summer without all of you.

We have a lot to process now and have every intention of sharing more thoughts on this website. So, please stay tuned for more updates. — Much love, Diane

PS Goodness, I do not want to forget to mention to you folks to check out www.bikingx.com. This is a group of 7 inspirational riders who Steve came across yesterday doing a cross country trek also. The two leaders are in their mid-20s and the other five are high school boys…2 sophomores, 1 junior, and 2 seniors. They are raising money for battle childhood cancer, so if you’d like to donate, please check out their website: www.bikingx.com.

Celebration!!

Steve rode 13.5 miles today from Williamsburg to Yorktown, VA! He dipped his front tire in and he’s done!

His quote is “It’s done and it’s over”. He promised more stuff to come shortly. His bike computer clocked him at 4,536 miles. Can you imagine that? On a bike? That mileage is the equivalent of driving TO and FROM Chicago from our house 55 times. Or if I drove to and from Lone Tree from my house 11 times. OR if I drove from Bandon, OR to Yorktown, VA.

Anyway, there’s much relief that he’s done and he’s looking forward to coming home. Not before stopping in DC and Pennsylvania first of course!