Planes, trains, and OH SHIT DEER!

Ok, so there weren’t any trains today, though I did cross tracks several times.
The day started poorly.  Woke up, boiled water for tea, and found myself playing H2G2 (no tea), so breakfast was hot water and salty peanuts.  I’d already discovered the nearby showers were out of order, so I trekked over to the far side of camp to the other shower house, about a 15 minute walk.  Showered, dressed, and on my way, only about two hours later than intended.
The ride out to the museum took longer than expected, in part because of some nice roads I ended up on by mistake, and in part because of some slow traffic through what I thought would be a quick highway section. A few miles before the museum I was hungry and saw a Sonic, so I stopped for lunch. First time at Sonic for me, I can see myself doing it again; tasty, quick, and cheap works for lunch on the road.
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Got to the museum, parked in the rockstar motorcycle parking, and quickly lost myself in the early flight through WWI section. Sadly, my camera battery was dead, so not many pictures (phone camera is very slow). Got to WWII, saw the time and realized there was less than an hour to closing, and started rushing. They announced closing in fifteen minutes before I got through WWII even just skimming, so I did a really quick run through of the modern and cold war sections, glanced at the space section, and was out of time.  I really must make a point of going back with a lot more time, three or four days, at least.
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Back at the bike I was approached by a nice couple there on a trike with a trailer. We chatted for a while, then said our goodbyes and I suited up to head “home”.
On the way, I realized I wouldn’t make camp before 2000h even if I didn’t stop for supplies, so I stopped for dinner. Tasty country fried steak with biscuits, gravy, mash, and green beans, served by what may well be the world’s most attentive wait staff.  My glass was never less than half full before they refilled it.  Excellent meal, and very reasonably priced.
Around the next corner I spotted a Kroger, so stopped in for critical breakfast supplies. They had a big sign in the window advertising their new liquor store inside, so I resolved to pick something up for the night.  When inside, I quickly found what I was looking for, until it came to booze.  In the section with beer and wine, they had an assortment of booze, all 42 proof or less.  The whiskies were all marked “diluted!”  They were seriously cheap, but hell no! Giving up on that idea, I look for a bottle of water to refill my camelbak and instead found the real liquor store, off behind the pharmacy.  Excellent!
Back on the road, now into dusk, I’m running about 65 on a long hilly straight with a slight cross wind.  Something moving at the edge of the road up ahead catches my eye, then I see the deer. Full-on maximum effort rear-wheel-off-the-ground panic stop, I just manage to get a foot down before losing the bike, and realize I’ve been faked out by a deer-shaped mailbox behind a branch swaying in the breeze.
Continuing on, it starts to get dark with about an hour left to go.  I generally ride with my main beam on to be more visible in these conditions, but when I next encountered traffic and switched to the dipped beam it was so bright I became convinced my main light had gone.  It hadn’t, but compared to the new bulb it may as well have, so I’ll be stopping tomorrow to replace it, too.
Extra paranoid about deer, having seen way too many already on this trip, I keep getting faked out by fireflies in the weeds.  After the third or fourth time hauling on the brakes for fake deer, I nearly didn’t react to the real one.  Fortunately it froze with just one leg on the pavement so we passed without incident, but the rest of the ride to camp was made very slowly.
Happily, arriving at camp well after dark and dosed with adrenaline wasn’t too bad, as camp was already made and I had a full belly.  Nearly full moon,  clear night, serious shadows.  Spent some time sitting by the lake taking in the universe, until I was interrupted by a couple of very loud angry grunts that sounded like “what?” Shined a light in that direction to see some large cat like critter saunter across the field. No clue what it was, other than creepy.
Back to the campsite, burned some time starting a fire by rubbing a couple of sticks against each other, mostly to see if I still could.  Let it burn down, finished my drink then crawled into the tent.  Couldn’t sleep, so wrote this instead.
Mileage: 232
States: OH
MIA: My favourite headlamp. I’m hoping it turns up in the morning.
Tomorrow, KY and starting on the Bourbon Trail.

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mwl

Just a crazy guy who doesn't ride nearly enough.

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