Denise Goldberg's blog

Saturday, July 29, 2006


Dripping sweat, red face, hot...

This was a weekend that easily could have been three different weekends. I toyed with the idea of heading out on my bike for a short two-day trip, but the weather forecast (sun on Saturday, but a possibility of rain on Sunday) kept telling me it wasn't a good idea. I thought of heading to Philadelphia to spend time with family, but a funny under-the-weather feeling took over and nixed that idea. That feeling did manage to disappear by this morning, but when it was time to make plane reservations, well, it just didn't seem to be the right thing to do. The third weekend? Stay at home, wander somewhere on my bike, try to spend some time reading about places in Nova Scotia that I might want to visit (during my vacation there in September).

Bright sunshine ushered in the day, which quickly became very hot and a bit humid too. The desire for a slight change of scenery sent me off to the coast. Unfortunately, it took me a bit longer than usual to get to the start of my ride; somehow I forgot that traffic heading into New Hampshire and Maine on Saturday mornings in the summer is more than a little bit heavy. There was a 3-mile backup getting to the Hampton tolls on I-95.

For the next time I need to remember to leave home a little earlier, or to be prepared for a slow jaunt through the toll booths.
My car dropped me off - and happily waited for my return - at the corner of route 1 and 111 in New Hampshire (I think in North Hampton). From there it's just a 3-mile ride to the coast. Ah, there's the water. And there is a large flock of cormorants sitting on rocks not too far out to sea. Beautiful.

I headed to the north and east, followed the coast to Portsmouth, walked across the bridge to Maine after waiting for the bridge to return to a solid surface (no cycling allowed on this bridge...), and continued on rolling roads for a bit further before deciding that it was probably past time to head back. Out and back, hot, somewhat humid, wind in my face as I returned.

It was a wonderful ride - even though it took me a while to cool off when I was finished. My one regret was that I didn't snap a picture of my very red and sweaty face when I got back to me car! When I saw myself in the rear view mirror, my immediate hope was that my red face was due to being very hot and not due to sunburn (through my very liberal application of SPF30 sunscreen). And yes, it was from the heat...

Luckily my car had picked a parking spot just across the street from a well-stocked (gas station) convenience store. As soon as I had stashed my bike in the car, removed my helmet, and traded cycling shoes for my Chaco sandals, I headed into the store for some cold drinks. I had gone through two quarts of Gatorade and two quarts of water while I was riding, but I definitely needed more liquid. Cold liquid was definitely welcome.

Oh, you think that riding 49 miles on a hot and humid day wasn't a great idea? You're probably right, but other than the pool of sweat I left behind it was a very pleasant ride.

A bevy of cormorants, soaking up the sunshine, drying wings

Waiting for the bridge to return to a solid surface provided a quick rest and some good conversations with other people waiting to cross.

From fake flamingos hanging out on an island... ducks, paddling quickly away from (my) human presence

More pictures of today's wanderings can be seen in my Glimpses of water - coastal New Hampshire, 2006 photo gallery on pages 5 and 6.

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