Last night I opted to sleep fly-less. The forecast was warm and dry. I bungeed the fly to the picnic table and went to sleep. The temperature was perfect. At 4:30 am I felt some drops on my face. I tried to figure out if it would be brief or turn in to something worse. Finally I decided it’s likely to get worse, so me and a million mosquitoes danced around the tent scrambling to attach the fly. I tried to sleep but the driving rain wasn’t far behind. Eventually I was out cold. Then, I woke up during a particularly heavy downpour around 6:30. My departure would be delayed. All of a sudden there was a flash. Then a rumble. Groggily I identified this as thunder. Then groggily I tried to remember if tents and thunder make good bedfellows. Finally my brain engaged and a mad scramble ensued to get dressed, run to the picnic table and figure out which bag contained my rain jacket, and beeline it to the bathrooms to hide in safety.
It was then that I remembered that the most hotly anticipated album of the year came out this morning. I fired up Spotify to start listening. Drizzy reminded me that maybe a super late departure was just God’s plan. But he also noted I had an ace up my sleeve. So, I used it, scrambling to pack when the rain stopped.
I pushed as hard as I could. As soon as the rain stopped the heat came. It was unrelenting. I was going through water like never before. The campsite didn’t have potable water so at the first gas station I topped up. I grabbed whatever cold, sugary thing they sold to try to cool down. I repeated this a few times, clearly sugar crashing.
Then I had to slog through 10k of milled asphalt. After that it was the bumpiest roads I’ve ever seen (I was warned). Finally, tired and warm and slightly thirsty I caught a glimpse of the nickel.
Part one of my day was done. From there I went to the outdoor store to get some gear cleaned & water repellent, arriving 30 minutes before they closed. This is when I realized how low I was on fluids, my voice cracking as I spoke. I was also about to faint from lack of snacks for the past three hours. There was just enough time to eat something and get to the post office, where my parcel with down wash and mildew cleaner were waiting. So, I grabbed poutine and water from the chip truck and devoured both. After a beautiful ride along one of Sudbury’s curb-separated bike lanes I arrived at the post office, which was closed two hours early.
I can’t begin to describe the frustration I felt at this point, having raced through the heat to get here before close, to pick up a parcel that was supposed to have been left on the porch two days prior. As I debated what to do tomorrow an email arrived saying the parcel had been delivered. Odd. Off I went to the house I’m staying at and sure enough it was there!
Thanks to the hospitality of my former roommate’s grandmother I was able to wash my camping gear, eat some more food, wash off, and enjoy the thunder (and alleged tornado) from inside. God’s plan indeed.*
Today’s distance: 166.5 km
Cumulative distance: 4,275.4 km
Today’s climb: 890 m
* If the Drake references were of the wrong era for you, I should clarify that I don’t believe in God or someone else having a plan for me