August 4, 1999

 

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What's New!!

Journal Entry - August 4, 1999 -  (Wawa, ON to Sault Ste. Marie, ON)

4094.6k from Vancouver

The end of my solo journey to Wawa was the beginning of two wonderful
weeks with Jane, visiting from Vancouver. The end of her visit is now
the beginning of my solo journey to Orillia. Every end is the start of
something new. You cannot have one without the other.

But knowing this does not make endings any easier.

Within these past two weeks was another ending. The end of the first
solo-self-supported run across Canada.

At first, this was a difficult pill to swallow, but Jane helped me
realize that it doesn't much matter. The whole ordeal made me come to
understand more about what this trip is really all about.

On Saturday, July 24th, I had some tum-tum crampies in the morning. I
had to lie down on the roadside a few times to let them subside. On the
fourth such instance, I was getting frustrated that these cramps were
costing me so much time. As I departed, RoadRunners right rear tire
blew its sidewall after almost 4000k of faithful service.

Now, I was sort of prepared for this. Jane had two brand new tires
available for me if this ever happened. They were only a day or two
away (by air) in Vancouver. But, of course, Jane was now here. Not in
Vancouver.

Jane came across me on the roadside and we came up with a plan. She
would attempt to find such a tire in Sault Ste. Marie (180k south)
and/or call Bill at YESS Frames to ask for help. All I had to do was
put the front tire on the back and do the 2 wheeled rickshaw thing.
Both of our tasks proved to be much harder than either of us
anticipated.

I dragged RoadRunners 200 pounds through rolling dirt shoulders for 24
kilometres to arrive at Katherine Cove completely exhausted. Jane had
no luck in the Soo, but did reach Bill who would ship out a rescue
package. After reviewing a dozen possibilities that involved the
generous assistance of Carl & Ruth at Crescent Lake and Dan at
Northgate, for numerous reasons, we ended up with only two
possibilities: Rickshaw travel or running sans RoadRunner with support
by Jane.

The rickshaw option was hard on my back and the supported option would
conclude my self-supported tour status.

Now it was time to evaluate the meaning of this trip.

It was quite simple when I actually thought about it: The journey is a
patriotic run across Canada to celebrate entering the new Millennium as
a strong, optimistic and united country. Where does it say anything
about ferrying all my gear, every day, even if it risks damaging my
back?

So Jane brought me water and food every 40 minutes for one day of
running 41k in 3:44. Running without the RoadRunner meant running up
the hills instead of pushing up them and total freedom from pavement
desires. I didn't have to look behind me and I felt so unencumbered, it
was like I was a feather...

But I still missed RoadRunner. So I was jubilant when he was all fixed
two days later as I dashed to Pancake Bay. Another beginning.

And Pancake Bay was at its best. What a superb vacation with Jane. I
almost forgot about my running intentions but the rest days turned out
to be very good for my conditioning. The first day out of Pancake was
one of my fastest days and so far, my longest (54.4k in 5:38). And
afterwards, I was like new. We played horseshoes, swam, did a drive in
the country and I had no discomfort whatsoever. The human body is an
amazing thing.

Now it's time to leave Sault Ste. Marie. Jane & I have enjoyed it very
much. The Mayor, Steve Butland, even helped me accomplish my first dare
(see photos in a few weeks). The City Hall staff has been wonderful,
even if the local papers were completely disinterested to the point of
being funny (wait for the book for those conversations).

I came across an intersection in town where a family of 4 were waving
furiously at me. As I came close, the Dad rolls down his window and
yells, "Saw you on TV in Vancouver, but never expected to see you here!
Way to go!" People continue to entertain and delight me, as they honk,
wave, try to give me money or stop to take my picture. Lots of happy
people out here...

But today, two sad people said their farewells as they ended their two
week adventure. They know there will be other beginnings, but knowing
that does not make this ending any easier.

Life is a circle, from one beginning to another.

Cherish it all...

Kevin

Previous Journal Entries

July 23, 1999 Ignance, ON to Wawa, ON
June 30, 1999 Kenora, ON to Ignance, ON
June 21, 1999 Winnipeg, MB to Kenora, ON
June 11, 1999 Brandon, MB to Winnipeg, MB
June 3, 1999 Regina SK to Brandon, MB
May 21, 1999 Gull Lack SK to Regina SK
May 11, 1999 Medicine Hat AB to Gull Lake SK
May 4, 1999 Fort Macleod AB to Medicine Hat AB
April 23, 1999 Cranbrook BC to Fort Macleod AB
April 15, 1999 Grand Forks BC to Cranbrook BC
April 4, 1999 Osoyoos BC to Grand Forks BC
March 28, 1999 Hope BC to Osoyoos BC
March 21, 1999 Vancouver BC to Hope BC
Pre-Trip - Jan 26 - March 15 Vancouver BC

 

 

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Last updated: October 30, 2003.