For the past two days we have been in the Texas Hill Country - quite different from the dry, parched look of west Texas. I had looked forward to this part of the tour because I expected it to be most like the Ozarks hills where I do most of my riding.
It is that and then some. Some of the grades have been in the double digits and quite long - steeper than any of the mountain passes we have crossed so far. Like the 18% hill going south out of the Square in downtown West Plains........but close to a mile long. Lots more hairpin turns on roads with no shoulders so I decided this was no place to try figuring out whether my vision problems were resolved. I did take some pictures from the van but they really don't capture the depth of field necessary to appreciate the awesomeness of this ride.
I see the therapeutic optometrist in the morning and hope he confirms my belief that this is a minor problem that was exacerbated by a specific set of very weird circumstances. We are in a lovely hotel for our rest day and their shuttle will take me to my appointment and bring me back. My bike is relatively clean (since I haven't ridden it much) so I will have the whole day to just rest and relax. I might spend some time window shopping at Lowe's across the street. Since the hotel doesn't allow us to cook or eat in the parking lot, Linda took us out to dinner in the hotel's restaurant - tablecloths, cloth napkins, drinks in glasses rather than plastic chairs, paper plates and plastic cups in the parking lot. We even wore clean clothes.
This may seem like an odd kind of trip and an odd way of spending days off, but that is part of the charm, part of the fun and part of the joy. However. I DO want to spend more time riding my darn bike!