Day one of my trip, yesterday, brought me to the dumpy-but-sterile Howard Johnson’s in Jamaica, New York, chosen for the fact that it’s just a mile from Kennedy airport. Here’s the $125 view:
Today, I cycled north through Queens toward the Bronx. On the way, the bumpy Queens streets (rural Saskatchewan backroads are smoother) broke the bolting holding on one side of my rear rack. Because of the weight, the rack bent, and I had to unload the whole bike to fix it, putting me behind schedule. Then, having carried on, I discovered that the only bridge that crosses to the Bronx is a bicycle-forbidded freeway with no sidewalks. Thus, I was forced to cycle west to Manhattan to use the Triboro bridge. Unfortunately, I somehow confused west with east and ended up way the hell out in Little Neck, practically in the next state, before I realised my error. To make things worse, my left knee started to hurt again.
As I have to be in Easton (north of Albany) by Saturday afternoon, I no longer had time to make it cycling. So, I was forced to rent a car and drive to Albany. The nearest location? Kennedy airport. I rode all the way back down there, and by the time I arrived my knee was killing me. There’s nothing cheap about New York, and I’m paying an exorbitant rate for this stupid car, a Dodge Magnum that looks like the vehicle of choice of a gangster pimp.
As I write this, I am having dinner at a “Roy Rogers” at a truck stop on the I87 Thruway, where a portion of every large Coca-Cola is donated to “support our troops and their families”. I ordered water.
I’m not sure what the knee problem is. I like to think that it’s this bike, which isn’t ideally suited to long-distance touring. At least, that sounds a lot better than old age. I won’t be able to stick to my plan to ride to New Brunswick if the pain persists, so a change of plan may be in order. Maybe in the end it will be a Greyhound tour of the northeast. I’ll have to put some Simon and Garfunkel on the Ipod.
Better news to come. I hope!