Saturday, October 6, 2012
"Are you lost?"
Stopped right here, I pull my camera out to show you all this road. It is a new one for me, and part of a new 60+ mile loop northeast of the house. As the camera comes to life, the slow moving pickup slows to a stop beside me. I glance up, see the passenger window is down, and wait for the rancher to say something. When I decide the silence is bordering on awkward, I say, "Good morning!"
He returns the greeting, and adds, "Are you lost?"
Cautiously, I wonder if he is sincerely concerned or a little suspicious. After all, why would a goofy-dressed bicyclist be out here on a dirt road in the middle of nowhere?
I tell him I have a map, and think I am where I hope to be, but that some of these county roads are not signed. He confirms that I am on the correct road, and asks another question that could be interpreted as either suspicion or genuine helpfulness. So I tell him my plan to make a left turn, head west, and take a few other county roads back to North Shore Road. He pauses and processes that information, and says, "You are nowhere near North Shore Road".
I think he underestimates the comfortable range of a bicycle.
So I pull out my map, and recite the sequence of roads that leads back to North Shore Road. Either his suspicions are satisfied, or his understanding of a bicycle's range is expanded. Then he asks, "Oh, so you live over there?"
"No, I live in Sanger."
Another pause to process information. I think his understanding of the bicycle's range is significantly expanded. Then he wishes me well, and drives on at about bicycle pace. So I decide to go ahead take that photo of the road, and include the back of that pickup before it fades out of sight.