Day 19 – Bloomfield, ON to Cobourg, ON – 59 miles
We started the day by partaking in “high-protein, low on the glycemic index” breakfast muffins prepared by our host, KT and yapping with our hosts at the Bloomfield Bicycle company. The staff at the bike shop is included in breakfast, so it was a lively discussion, flavored with some salty language and frank conversation on a variety of topics – great fun! Before too long we said our goodbyes to the Bloomfield gang and headed out.
After two days of headwinds, we were a little concerned about an even longer day and more headwinds. But, apparently we had paid our penance because we were greeted with winds blowing in the right direction! Shawn routed us through some of the back roads of Prince Edward County. There were beautiful views of Lake Consecon, and older farms and homesteads. It seemed like there were even more lilacs today! No traffic and smooth roads made for some wonderful miles. And with the tailwinds, the miles were clicking away.
We had lunch at a small country diner – quick service and good food – the way we like it.
We continued on to a surprise crossing of the The Trent – Severn Waterway. This is a series of canals and locks (and boat lifts! Check out: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-QixJkpohzw4/UfRq9eSujOI/AAAAAAAAEGo/3zJMeWCbmIM/s1600/Trent+Severn+July,+2013+006.JPG ) that connect Lake Ontario to Lake Huron ( Georgian Bay). We read about it years ago in Lakeland Boating & always wanted to do it with our boat, but never got around to it!
When we rolled into Brighton, we noticed a hairdresser on the corner. Shawn had been thinking of redoing her shaved head – the pink dye left pink spots that left her looking like the love child of the punk panther & a leopard. Then we noticed the name of the hairdresser – Lisa Rathbun! Well, we had to go! We walked in and she was so nice! She said she could fit us in between clients, so we waited about 10 minutes & then she took care of Shawn. And guess what?? She gets people calling her Rathburn too!
At this point, we figured we had messed around enough & we ought to get some more miles behind us, so we headed out. A few miles down the road (after climbing & then racing down a bazillion ridges), we noticed another heavily-loaded cyclist approaching from the other direction. He stopped, so we did too. As he crossed the street to talk to us, a dog jumped out of his bike trailer! We later learned his name is Tim and his dog, Struppi. This German team has been traveling the world in a very independent manner for over a year. He just got to Canada several weeks ago from Lisbon & had already visited Niagara Falls.
Tim pulls a dog kennel on a trailer, on the top is a large solar charger for his computer and phone, and finds out of the way places to camp or sleeps under the stars. The dog runs 25 kilometers each day, then gets tired and hops in the trailer for the rest of the days miles – or runs more if he wants! When Tim stopped, Struppi got out of the trailer, ran down to the nearby creek for a drink, then immediately laid down beside Tim for a nap. Tim said Struppi never knows when he will need to run again, so he catches sleep whenever he can. Tim wanted to get a rescue dog but they wouldn’t give him a dog at the animal shelter if he didn’t have a home and a yard. He said to them, this dog’s yard is going to be the world! They didn’t buy that, so he ended up getting Struppi thru an ad in the paper. We were amazed at how well-behaved Struppi was on the side of a highway, in particular! He said it took only about a week to teach Struppi to run on his right. I think this is a dog very happy with his life and very much in tune with his human companion!
We talked to Tim for about a half hour. He spent a lot of time talking about how he is dumbfounded with Canadians and their respect for rules and insistence that he pay fines for for anything from taking his dog into a mall or taking his dog, without a leash, for a run along the highway. (He wasn’t actually fined but received a lot of warnings!) Tim was on his way to see the Bay of Fundy in Nova Scotia. We will always remember him saying, in his German accent “A 15 meter tide! I must see this!” As we rode away, Struppi was running on his right as they crossed the street, barking as if to say, “Alright! Let’s go! Yay!”
Before too long, we rode into the charming, historic town of Cobourg, where our WS host for the night lives. He had mentioned he’d be 5:30-6:00 before he got home from work, so we sought out a coffee shop for a warm beverage to warm us up. We found a great place, we both had a warm decaf beverage and set out for our WS host’s home. It was about a 4 mile ride, away from Lake Ontario, so it was primarily uphill with some good-sized ridges to climb. When we got there, Randy was there with a warm smile, a cold home-brewed beer (happy Jim!) and great accommodations! Randy is quite the brewmeister and even spoke at an American brewers conference in Frankenmuth several years back! Anyhow, we showered, started our laundry & joined Randy upstairs. He had maps of the Waterfront Trail & gave us tips on what to expect, what to avoid. Shortly after that, Randy’s girlfriend, Anita arrived with pizza. We had a great evening of conversation, pizza and great home-brewed beer. Before too long it was almost midnight and Randy had to be out the door to work at 6:30! Fun night! Sorry for keeping you up so late and thanks for a great evening!!!
Derek (with the pump), kt and Rick from Bloomfield Bicycle Co. “TV Sucks Ride Your Bike”
Trent Severn Waterway
Shawn (mostly pinkless) & Lisa Rathbun
Tim & Struppi