Day 10 Journal
Its over! Its finally over. Wow what a ride! Its incredible to describe the feelings as we dipped our wheels into the Atlantic. Joy, exhaustion, pride, pain. I just wanted to cling on to my wife Lesleys arms and stay there.
There were so many moments during the past ten days that will never be forgotten.
The many night rides form the rockies to the prairies that became spiritual delights and gave us all time to reflect on why we're doing what we're doing. The many times where people joined in from many communities to share in the joy of life and ride along with us to give something back. The awesome weather that never once stood in our way and like angels, offering us their wings from Coast to Coast. Paying a visit to my parents memorial in London, where I realized it was my fathers energy and my mothers easy smile that had propelled me this far, and knowing they were looking down cheering us on. The many days and nights sharing life experiences with my best friends and knowing this experience will last me a lifetime. Knowing that my wife and family were behind me the entire way and awaited on the other side with open arms. And the thought that every pedal stoke and every km awareness and monies were being raised for young children and families that had to deal with cancer.
I thank you all for taking part in this ride.
Day 9 Journal
I'm now writing this after having plenty of rest and now working on a regular diet consisting of everything we were not allowed to eat during the trip. Day 9 was a mixed bag of emotions. Jeff and I had a great ride from Moncton to the PEI bridge from 10pm to 2am, with a local group of cyclists that rode with us for 3 hours. Thanks boys!! The following shift Hamish and Kevin pushed through PEI to reach the eastern most point of the trip, we spent a few hours taking in the scenery with no one out on the road and had for the first time some time off. That didn't last long. Scott, Jamie and Erik rolled back out with clean bikes and covered more distance under the hot PEI sun. I realized that these next few shifts would be the last of our trip and really took inventory of what we had accomplished.
Jeff, Mitch and I were back on the saddles around noon and worked very hard on the rolling PEI terrain (I was cursing everyone who said PEI was flat!) until we reached the ferry to Nova Scotia. Later that evening and some 6700km covered we had our first bike incident. Scott (aka "crash") while holding one hand on bars and another on the microphone, hit the mother of all potholes at 35km/hr and was thrown over his bars and on his back. He was shaken but was back on 5 min later. It just proved how fragile and tired our minds and bodies were at at this point of the trip.
Jeff and I were back on the road from midnight to 4am. It was inland Nova Scotia with plenty of climbs and decents, our destination..our wives and children (and not to mention real beds and hot chili) at Chester, Nova Scotia. We arrived there at 4:30am and were greeted by Lucie and Lesley and a large pot of chili for everyone. We ralized this oasis would be shortlived as we had to be back on the bikes at 8am to make our way into Halifax, another 90km.
Day 8 Journal: June 21, 5:20pm
After just having read Scotts update, theres not much too add that can compete with his comments of conditions on board the Halifax Express. Our adventure would qualify for a SURVIVOR The Aerobic Zone. Yes we ride very hard and our muscles are screaming, our butts burn as we rest our weary bodies on our shrinking saddles, but the side story is overshadowing our accomplishments today. Re-focus is the word of the day! Weve just showered, cleaned the RV and its back to business, all cylinders are aligned and the food shelves have been re-stocked, KEv and Hamish are on the bike, burying another 130-140 km in the last 4 hours as we close in on Quebec City. Time to get some sleep while the sheets are still clean. Thanks for all your great messages weve been reading them any chance we get. Hugs to all. Freddy
Definately Not Fat Freddy
Day 7 - June 20th, 2003 9:34pm
What an emotional rush today was.
As I rode I realized we were appproaching, London, Ontario where I spent many happy years and also said goodbye to both of my partents, my father from multiple strokes and my mother to MS. We took a small detour where I paid a vistit to a memorial tree my bothers and sister have planted in their memory.
We were all emotionally charged as we approached Mississauuga, with riders slowly joining the ride through the Burlington stretch. Its difficult to put into words how one feels when you see an entire community come together and support a common cause.
The Clarkson and Port Credit receptions were nothing short of spectacular, by this time I was raw, with little sleep, physically drained, tears of joy streamed down my face as I embraced many family and friends. This is what an event like this is all about, a grass-roots effort of people sharing and giving their time and energy to the fight against cancer. I would like to thank each and every one of you for coming out!
Our ride to Toronto further charged the day with an incredible display of police escort service through the heart of the city enabling our group to ride uninterrupted to Front street where a large gathering of media and Fujitsu employees put on an energy filled reception to greet our team. It was unbelievable.
We're now cruising through Kingston and reminising of the days events and in sheer awe of the emotional storms that charged the day.
Now, back to our routine, with thighs burning, tired
eyes and hearts filled with hope and dreams.
Day 6- June 19th, 2003 4:15pm
To start this personal update, a great big thank you to the many family and friends that have sent in words of encouragement through the website and those others that have tunned in and participated in anyway they can to make this ride a success.
Last night/early this morning Jamie and I rode from 10-2am which included the stretch at the top of Lake Michigan through the Hiawatha Forest National Park. We were treated to velvet smooth roads and an erie and very dark night. When the RV had to make their coffee stops and Jamie and I were left alone our minds quickly filled with spooky thoughts of the disappearance of two men in spandex tights. But the ride ended filled with positive energy as we were read a dedication af Hanna and her successful battle with cancer.
I slept for five hours after that ride to find that Hamish and Scott had been left too long on the road and eventually veered of course and therefore falling behind two hours. Jamie and I (also joined by Kevin and Jeff-their optional ride) assumed the correct route while the rest of the team searched for Hamish and Scott. With brisk north winds and averaging around 35/km/hr over four hours we quickly made up 20mins of the lost time (Jamie put on a stellar cycling clinic, and continuously upped the pace).
RV life is very strange, mixed with people half functional,
and others just waking up making very little sense. Jamie is facinated
in capturing every little oddity in our life when we are most vulnerable
with the "Jamie Cam", should be facinating to see at the end
of this journey.
Day 5 - June 18, 2003 1:23pm
Wow, am I beat! Time does not exist on this trip. The only time on my watch is 0-4:00 (which is the start and stop watch function on my watch).
Last night will be one of the most memorable rides of this trip. It started at 1:00am with taking the hand off from Jamie and Kevin. Hamish and I set off into the dark with our nightlights, and our battered bodies. We were treated to ultra smooth roads unlike any I've riden before, warm night breeze and above all a wonderful lightshow including a moonlit sky along with a symphony of the northern lights. Hamish and I rode without sharing a word for about two hours listening to our gears and tires rolling smoothly along. Its those moments that fill your head with thoughts of just how fortunate and priveledged we are to be taking part in this event, in good health, surrounded with the support of family and friends.
Four hours after the end of that ride, Jamie and I mounted our bikes on a busy road with a small shoulder with strong headwinds, it was a true test of mental and physical endurance and probably the toughest ride of the trip. But like many of the cancer survivor children we have been fortunate enought to meet, we rode with their mantra in mind...never quit! The wheels just keep on turning for the many cancer dedications of this trip.
To the support team including Ashley at web-central,
a great big thank you.
Day 2 June 15, 2003 2:20pm
We have built an incredible machine, the best support
crew imaginable, everyone working in perfect harmony, its a thing
of beauty to watch.