Saturday, August 14, 2010
Sat. Aug 7, 2010 from the beach house in York, Maine to Pre-ride, Portsmouth, New Hampshire
Hello everybody. Wow, it's been a great 4 days! Met up with my gal pals in York, Maine and spent 3 great days
at the beach house in York. What fun! We rode two days saw some beautiful areas along the coast. Visited
Kittery and Eliot. We had great speghetti cooked my Denise, her old family recipe and her meatballs were outstanding.
Her Dad, Joe, now known as The Admiral and her Mother, Carol, now known as The Brigadiere General, own a beautiful home in
York. The home is over 200 years old, comfortable and as the Admiral says, it's a home to share with friends and family.
We felt most welcome.
8:40 pm mdt
We ate lobsters last night and I will get more photos up tomorrow evening. We
sat out on the deck and enjoyed the beautiful scenery of the blue Maine sky, watching the tide come in and listening to the
harbor bell and the fog horn of the light house. We went to the Nubble Lighthouse, had maple walnut ice cream at Brown's,
and relaxed and enjoyed visiting with each other.
Yesterday afternoon, Ellen and others helped me loose
15 lbs of uncessary weight from my luggage, so I would not experience, "luggage drama" at the weigh-in. Ellen
was very firm and was very patient asking me if I really needed something, which Denise chimmed in, NO, loose it!!!
Reluctantly, I gave in, however, I was able to earn only a few things back.
This morning we quickly ran to the
post office to mail the 15 extra lbs of unnecessary items. I returned the scale to Denise's neighbor and we were on
our way to Portsmouth, NH.
Pat, Ellen and I met up with Ellen's friend, Jeannie in Portsmouth. We had a quick
lunch by the harbor alongside the tugboats. (Those photos will be up tomorrow.) We did some fast shopping and
quickly got me to the hotel in time for 1 pm check in. I got my jersey, got my bike checked, ready for the weigh-in...ready
for the weigh-in...what no weigh in. Heck!! I could have brought more tackle!! Dern, I could have had the detangler!! Oh,
well, my back will thank me, later. (FYI to Ellen and Denise...this hotel room only has one (1)...count them ONE bottle
of liquid something. The label on the very tiny bottle states: Shampoo, conditioner, body soap...no lotion.) I
could have used the detangler. Mark my word, first stop on my shopping list will be detangler, body lotion
and maybe, just maybe some SOAP!!!! Ha!!!! I going to do it, Ellen and Denise!!
Meanwhile, Ellen, Jeannie
and I, do a quick walking tour of Portsmouth, NH, in one hour. Back to the hotel, to be ready for the orientation meeting.
I meet the 4 tour leaders and the 8 of us. This is such an different dynamic from other rides I have done. This
is such a small group and the benefit is that I scored!!! I will have my own room the entire tour This is a huge
deal, because an individual room usually costs a few thousand dollars. I am so excited!! Looks like a great group,
more details to follow. Only two women, myself and Leslie will complete the entire tour. Tomorrow is our first
day of riding. One-fourth of the que sheet covers one mile. It will be fast reading, many turns, 88 miles of just
getting from point A to point B. Wish me luck. I need to get to bed, it's 8:30 Denver time, 10:30 pm NH time,
still adjusting to the time change. Here I went!!! More to follow tomorrow. Hugs and love. Mary Kay.
PS Check out Day 1 story of my sister Kathy on the Rocky Mountain Stroke Center website. Awesome!
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Aug. 10-Pre-trip Information
Dear Friends and Family,
3:34 pm mdt
Please join me on my cross
country bicycling adventure raising support for Rocky Mountain Stroke Center. Beginning tomorrow, Aug. 11th, I depart from Denver and will arrive
in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. I will pick up my bicycle which was shipped to a bike shop in NH last week. Then I will meet up with 4 girlfriends
from my 2008 ride and we plan to rest for a few days in York, Maine. After wrapping myself in their support and love, I will become the property
by Bicycle on Sat. Aug. 14th.
On Sat., I return to Portsmouth, NH to attend a mandatory 10:00-3:00 pm shakedown, registration, safety check, bike
assembly meeting with the tour company. This tour group has set up the hotel accommodations and will provide luggage
and sag support during the trip. In addition, the ceremony of the final weigh-in of the luggage will be performed. This
will be our last chance to mail back home anything unnecessary items that put us over the 25 lb per bag limit/50lb total
weight limit. (FYI, this baggage restriction also includes a 2 carry-on limit, and a laptop in a case counts as a carry-on.
Oh, no…what about my tackle???) Let me tell you, packing is the most stressful part so far. I have a plan…I'll
let you know if it works. Stay tuned for luggage drama.
After lunch I will say goodbye to my gal pals and attend a
two hour orientation meeting from 3:30 to 5:30 pm. (This is when they will tell us it's not really downhill from Maine to Florida.) In addition, they will reiterate
the subject of attitude as expressed in our tour packages. Attitude is a choice, some things are not in our control,
what we make up the trip is up to us, individually. So, if it hurts, or we are unhappy, keep it to yourself. Following
orientation, there will be a social hour and Dinner until 7:30
pm. After that, lights out and I start my ride on Sun. August
Beginning on Sunday, please tune into www.strokecolorado.org and meet my sister, Kathy, who is a 4 year stroke survivor. Each day during the 25 day ride logon to the Rocky Mountain Stroke Center website above
and read a story about a stroke survivor. Their stories are amazing. It's these survivors that motivate me to
pedal the miles and challenge my physical and mental endurance, which is exactly what a stroke survivor lives with on a daily
basis. This organization believes in constant rehabilitation and support for stroke survivors, long after insurance benefits
run out. Please read their stories and show them your support.
In addition, you can follow my blog tour and see daily
photos of my journey at my website at www.zandercat.com Our average mileage is 75 miles per day. Our first rest day is Tues. Aug. 24th in Washington, DC. This will
be a well deserved rest, as we would have been riding consecutively for 9 days and will have completed 663 miles. Ouch, already!!
I have another ride friend who will be prying my hands from the handlebars of my bicycle and taking me to her home on the
Chesapeake Bay for an overnight rest. I am anxious, apprehensive and curious of this journey which is about to unfold
before me. Stay in touch through the links above. You can email me at email@example.com
I also dedicate this ride to Barbara Minnick of Terra Haute, Indiana. Her biking adventures ended last month while
she was on a ride across the first segment of the Northern Tier from Oregon to North Dakota. She was overcome by a vehicle the last week of the tour.
She had a very strong faith and a wonderful relationship with God, and those who rode with her, know that she is in
Heaven, riding along with the rest of us and keeping us safe. Here I went! Mary Kay Engel
I ride my bike in support of the Rocky Mountain Stroke Center. In June of 2006 my
sister suffered a severe stroke. RMSC has been very supportive to her quest to improve her lifestyle and help
her regain back her independence and confidence. Rocky Mountain Stroke Center helps stroke victims after regular
health insurance coverage runs out.
Please help me raise funds for this organization by offering a contribution
through the link on this page or please mail a check today to the center. Please reference Zandercat, so we can keep
track of my fundraising. Thank you for your support to the center and to my personal quest. There
is no deadline to make a donation. It can be done at any time.
|Specialized Carbon Fiber Ruby Pro Bicycle
|Zander the Cat