Despite the 22 mph winds yesterday, I pedaled my way to 51 miles. When I started out, the wind was out of the SW, so I headed west, thinking I'd have a nice, somewhat of a wind at my back for the return ride. Sounded good, but the wind didn't cooperate. After 25 miles into what was mostly a headwind, I turned around to find the wind had shifted to be a straight out of the south crosswind. By mile 44, I was toast. But, I managed to get 51 miles logged, and the fatigue felt really, really good, so I reveled in my winning the battle against the wind all evening, as I watched the Blackhawks win in overtime against the Redwings.
My plan to get out again today most likely won't happen. The wind is still at it, more so than yesterday it seems. I just can't get excited about cycling into 25 mph winds today. With my self-supported ride nearing, along with the ride with the Northern Tier group through Indiana and Illinois, I'm afraid I won't be physically ready to tackle the daily mileage. I've not ridden anywhere close to what I rode last year right up to the day we left out of Yorktown. Instead, I've been gardening and making things. Not exactly the kind of prep work required to be able to cycle an average of 65 miles a day. It is what it is, though, and I know I'll muddle through.
What I am excited about right now is my garden. Everything is growing! I was fearful the amount of rain we've had over the last three weeks would create problems, but so far all of my plants look good. My grapes are creeping over the trellis I put up for them. This is one of my favorite pieces to the garden. I am so looking forward to what it looks like when it's completely covered by the grapevines. I do have a new branch growing in the opposite direction of the trellis, towards the fence in the background. Not quite sure what to do about that, maybe get another cattle fencing panel to go up and over the wood fence. That might be kind of cool.
All of the gardening has given me permanent dirty fingernails. I try to clean them every night, but I've become like one of those guys working in a garage, whose fingernails are constantly stained with grease and oil. I don't mind so much; my dirty hands are helping grow food. That's a good feeling.