Day Fourteen

Meridian, MS to Forest, MS

This was a day when I didn't feel like riding, but I didn't feel like staying put, either. It rained all morning, but then it cleared up around 10:30. I decided to ride to Forest as planned. I started out through Meridian, where traffic wasn't as bad as I'd expected. The only problem I had was that there seemed to be  a red light at the bottom of every hill I descended. It was a real bummer to clamp on the brakes and waste that momentum < sigh> . " Old Hwy 80" was a treat for a fan of old roads--it was paved with the familiar concrete slabs that made up many US routes when they were first built. So it wasn't just " old," it was original. And it was smoother than much of US 80 in Mississippi, too. In fact, one can tell on the really bad roads that the state simply poured asphalt on top of the original concrete slabs--that would explain the regularity of the distance between the  buckles  in the pavement.

It was a gloomy day, but no rain fell on me. Just the same, my heart wasn't really in it. I'd started so late, around 11:30, that I had to mind the clock somewhat, and I had a bit of a morning headache, too. I stopped in at a truck stop where US 80 hooked up with old US 80, but I couldn't find anything appetizing, so I just bought juice. US 80 had a lot of long hills, but they weren't too steep in this area because some of the rock had been blasted. I rode through Chunky, memorable only for the name, and Hickory, where I microwaved a ham and cheese sandwich for lunch and took an Aleve. I began to feel better, although I still wasn't very enthusiastic about grinding out another 25 miles.

Somehow I made decent time to Forest. The last few miles into town were freshly paved. As I pedaled toward the motel, I felt very satisfied with my day. All things considered, it had been decent, especially considering that my attitude wasn't the best. At the Days Inn, I was happy to see that the package I'd ordered had arrived--the fully licensed version of my web authoring software. Now I would be legal, if I ever actually got my site up. I fell asleep at 9:00 PM.

Totals for the day: 51.74 miles in 4:16:36 for an average of 12.1 mph.

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