Day 14 [not] on the bike. 0 miles. 0 hours.

Rain day. So I am chilling at the Motel 6. Watching a marathon of bad TV. Eating fish and smoked oysters out of cans and drinking cheap whiskey (but only after 5 pm of course). I biked early this morning to the Asian grocery up the street and was surprised at how treacherous biking in the rain on wet streets in traffic can be.

So I am thankful to be out of the weather where I can catch up on laundry. I took advantage of a break in weather this afternoon to bike to the closest bike shop to replace my spare tube after yesterday’s flat tire. The owner, Dan Sherman, pointed out that my chain needed a little lube and I mentioned my front derailleur dumping the chain on the upshift so he made a minor tweak in the adjustment. Fine man who knew his stuff. One of those kind of people who knew what to do without being told. My kind of people.

And he told me that Hwy. 23 (called High St. through all of downtown) was all old Indian trail. It continues down through Chilllicothe onto the south and all the way to the river. So I look forward to biking tomorrow where I’ll be paying special attention to the vibes from the Indian signage along the way.

PS – Last summer when Sarah and I biked the N. Shore of Lake Superior we got the priviledge of walking a short bit of the Grand Portage. The Grand Portage is an 8 mile long portage that got the local native people from time immemorial passage around the last long stretch of big waterfalls and rapids on the Pigeon River before it flowed into Lake Superior. 18th century trappers used the same conveyance to transport their furs and in the doing opened up the northern territitories for future settlement. Their birchbark canoes – technology borrowed from the natives – was the enabling critical technology. Nothing would have happened without the birchbark canoe.

One only has to see the country to realize what tough men these natives and trappers were. So to touch these native trails, like the legendary Grand Portage, is to tread in the footsteps of giants.