Day Ninety-eight, Date Saturday, June 6, 2009
Time in Saddle: 1:52
Distance for the Day: 18.42+ miles From Homestead To Miami, FL
Accumulated Trip Distance: 4645.86 miles
Altitudes: Starting/Ending 20’/21’, Highest: 61’ Accumulated: 279’
Speeds: Avg: 9.8 mph, Max: 15.1 mph
Weather: 71° mostly clear, humid, becoming hot (upper 80s, lower 90s)
Got up at 5:45am, broke camp and packed up ready to roll by 6:20 from the Methodist Church in Homeland (the only place on this trip so far that I’ve left and come back to again, later). I went out to Hwy 1, north, and found a Starbucks where I could get breakfast (hot cocoa and scones - $6) sign into the two-hour, (ulp!) “pay-for” wi-fi. I normally avoid pay-for wi-fi, but needed to get in some Warmshower requests ASAP, as I would need to hang around northeastern Florida for the next several days to wait for the shuttle launch. So, I stayed at Starbucks a few hours, put in some Warmshowers requests, and brought my blog notes up to date. I took off at about 9:30am to begin heading into the outer, southern suburb towns of the greater Miami area, not far to the north. Near Cutler Ridge, I found a library with free wi-fi, and logged in, again to see if I got any replies to my Warmshowers queries – and I did! I had a place to stay starting *tomorrow*, but would still need to find some place to stay, tonight. I left the library about 3pm (yikes – it was hot and humid), and began wending my way up Hwy 1, further into the greater Miami metropolitan area, buying a few more drinks along the way ($5), when I stopped in at a Dairy Queen for my favorite item (small double-choco malted). This is where I met Cynthia, and her friends, Ken and his sister, Donna. Cynthia was curious about my trike, and *very* interested in my trip. In fact, she said she felt so strongly inspired by it, she not only paid for my choco malted, she drove me and my gear in her very nice truck into downtown Miami and set me up with a hotel room at the Holiday Inn - University of Miami (say WHAT?!!!) She even paid extra to let me watch a movie in my room. She said she just felt a real connection with what I was doing, and decided to treat me to a bit of luxury to help ease the hardships of the road. I initially protested her doing this, but I’ve come to realize in my life’s time, that it can be a form of cruelty to prevent someone from doing something nice for one’s self – to in effect kill the opportunity to perform a kind deed for someone else (who happens to be me), so I accepted, and thanked her for being so exceptionally kind and generous to a total stranger. And to top it off, Ken came up to my room and gave me a couple of mangoes to eat (they’re gone, already – they were *delicious*, though I really need to find out how you’re supposed to prep ‘em), and tons of advice about the area, things to see and local foods to try, so thank you, Ken! As I look outside my hotel room window, and see streaks and forks of lighting spray two-thirds of the way across my field of view, I know that tonight, I am truly thankful. Excuse me, while I go take a shower, and then watch a movie.