Day 3 – 30km east of Quebec City at Spring Motel – Comfort Inn, Baie-Comeau
Drove - 426km (1559km)
Gas – 15L (91L)
Cost of Gas $15.50 ($88.50)
Two hotels - $73 and $115 ($188)
*Camped for free on Thursday night in Hawkesbury
That pretty much sums up the conditions of the driving and weather today. Rain and wind, and lots of it, were bastardy present. There was very poor visibility too as it was hard to find a comfortable position with either glasses on or my visor down. The rain just pelted me. Trucks pushed me from behind which I felt compromised my safety at times too. Wowzers. I didn't stop for photos or enlightenment because, well, it was raining. Did I mention that. I saw about 6 motorcyclists all heading west, which I figure was undoubtedly home for them, and here I am heading east, further away from home, and into miserable weather. My heated grips conked out halfway during the day, but there is still power to the 12 volt receptacle. (Help Jeff! It can't be the fuse....) The drive was much longer then I thought it would be. But like the faithful Buck I did not quit, and nor will I.
Many positives though...
I started the day super dry and confident. The emails and good wishes are fantastic. I have received more words of wisdom and good quotes. Thank you all. I have added a few people to the messages and started a blog which can be read at http://drmexploits.blogspot.com/. Go there. Tell your friends. Pictures too. Thanks for the positive feedback.
I drove back 10 km towards Quebec City and took a picture of that waterfall that I regretted yesterday. However it was $6 to park! Typical Quebec. Tax anything and everything of social importance except booze and smokes. I took a picture from the highway, as well as the bridge over to the south side of the St. Lawrence and carried on. I also attempted to view the waterfalls at Mont St. Anne, but the $12 to get in, and it was raining, nope.
My second stop was only 10km past the Spring Hotel at these two spectacular churches. I was basically in Mont St. Anne. They were terrific. I wanted to go in and ask where is it one prays to the weather God for clear skies. I figured not many people spoke English who were there. I wisely put on my rain gear.
I pushed on and not 15km later it was a full on misty/rainy mess. It was first thing in the morning that a BMW pulled up beside me at a stop light, honked the horn, and gave me a big thumbs up. (It was only a 328 though Coups – not like your five series!)
I was on a car ferry for a 400m or so crossing of a river. I was soaked on the outside and a nice couple about my age asked if I wanted to sit in their car. It was only like a Corolla or something... I declined. But it was nice of them to be so kind.
I stayed dry and warm all day. I mean I got a bit wet one inch around the cuffs of my sleeves and neck line. My feet were basically dry too. That was terrific. Such a relief. Some of my clothes got a bit wet in my rubberized duffel bag – I suppose nothing is totally 100% water resistant. I have better then decent riding gear. A wise investment. I have cheapened out on many things in my life, many of you know that, but having good riding gear was a wise idea. I can't believe I was tempted to leave my rain gear in the closet too. It takes of no room on the bike, but I honest thought I would see no rain on this trip. How wrong. I also had some great half coffees and hot chocolates at 2 Irving gas stations. I thought of Mike, Kathy, Liesa, and Beaser as the warm liquid comforted me.
My heated grips worked for half of the day. Jeff – What is the problem! Tyler, help me out. There is a current going to the fuse because the 12v addition still works! It is a mystery. They were turned on. I turned off the bike and gassed up. When I turned the bike back on, go heat. But it really isn't that cold and I managed fine. It was about 12 degrees throughout the day. But the wind chill....
I did some laundry in the sink at the hotel. Some socks and shirts. You'll notice the picture. You might be asking yourselves where are the undies/running shorts. They must be dirty too. Well, my friends, I just so happen to be an expert at origami. Not many of you know that. I am able to fold a standard pair of Old Navy, size 30 or course, underwear 4, and sometimes 5 times, to maximize the wear so that there is a clean area where a clean area needs to be. So there.
I went for another run! The body never forgets the travellers out and back 3 or 4 shake out miles from a hotel along a busy highway. Never. I love it. I even had a nice little pick-up going through a yellow/red. I ran into a St. Hebert and got a chicken ceaser salad take-out. It was not that great though. But I have lots of fruit to eat and water to drink. Shelia would be proud of my diet of as much veggies as possible. No poutine yet.
And the weather is looking better for the next few days. No rain is showing up for the next 24 hours in the towns/areas I am going through. That makes me happy. Though it is still raining now.
So no huge regrets today. I thought of school and work three times. First I thought I would rather be teaching then drive through this misery..... Then I thought of school when I pulled into the hotel. There is an elementary school 100m behind the building. It was raining, yet the kids were outside for recess. Unbelievable. And the third time was actually the first, which was last night when I wrote the last paragraph in this report. Oh, and I replied to a few first class emails. I guess I have thought about school more then 3 times.
And Shelly, I have thought about you a great deal. I thought about how horrific our motorcycle adventure was from Port Hood – Baddeck – Cheticamp – Port Hood. My love. This is sort of similar. It isn't great all in all because I feel like I am missing on the relaxation of the road and the good scenery there is to see. But I have also thought about how much I am missing you. How much I wish we were together. But this isn't together time. Trust me. (Insert romantic quote about love and pining.) I miss you and hope you are doing well. How's Mango?
Last night I had a tonne of time and I was rereading over my first couple of journals.... I noticed it was a bit sketchy with grammar, use of verbs, spelling erors (HA), and the like. Julie knows all too well about this and my writing. The reports and newsletters she's read and fixed/edited from yours truly. Yikes.... Nevertheless, Dave Martin wrote a disclaimer in the first few paragraphs of his memoirs that the writing was a bit “freestyle”, perhaps. I can't remember exactly what he wrote, but it was something to the effect that there were undoubtedly some errors with this, that, and the other in his journals, but bear with the content and read over the errors. So, what I am saying is, read over the errors. I am sort of self correcting. Trying to.
Have a great weekend everyone. Next report from Labrador. Safe and sound.