They made it. Against the odds (Las Vegas, 4:1) the Savvy?Travelers made it home to Vermont. They appear to be physically unharmed and no more psychologically damaged than when they started. They are cold but when asked if they would turn around and go back they replied, No ****** way, or so it sounded, they were shivering at the time.
So what was it like to return to Vermont? Well, the reentry is ecstatic. A beautiful sunny 65 degree day, smooth sailing. I won’t say that I cry when I see the Welcome to Vermont sign, but Shelagh will probably beg to differ. Brattleboro is quite fun with, you guessed it, lots of restaurant choices, which I would have figured out 40 years ago if I would have realized that the Rt 91 exit for Brattleboro is actually almost a mile away from the city. Who knew?
The next day we’re biking to Townshend, Grafton, and Chester. It’s 70 degrees, the warmest we’ve experienced since Richmond, Va. and the ride is exquisite. We eat at a great Scottish pub in Chester, sit outside for dinner where we meet up with a couple who tell us all about the seven year sailing trip that they did a few years before moving to Vermont. We decide not to extend our ride for another six years. The next morning it’s still warm but the rain is starting. Time to rest. That night the rain changes to snow and by the morning it’s below freezing and blowing north winds. We wait until 2 pm for the subtle warm-up above freezing, then head a short distance to Ludlow, home of Okemo ski area. It’s only 13 miles, but it’s 13 very cold miles that get us closer to our next day’s destination: Brandon.
Unfortunately, Okemo is closed so almost all of the restaurants are also closed. Miraculously, we find an excellent beer store and a BYO Chinese restaurant, so all is not lost. In the morning the temperature is 16 degrees, the coldest we’ve experienced since leaving Waverly, Georgia. With the heavy rains and snow melt, our next day’s ride is complicated when only three miles from Brandon we encounter flooded roads necessitating a turn back for an extra eight miles most of which are spent with the sounds of the exciting traffic and the minimal shoulder of Rt 7. So, we’re back in Vermont, we’re cold, and coming to grips with flooded, dirt roads. Home.
The last day is a simple 25 mile ride home from Vergennes. Starts out raining with the wind blowing in our faces. It did stop raining eventually but as far as I can tell the wind is still blowing. And we’re home.