We had enjoyed a nice little stay in Perry, FL, but this trip is not about staying in one city and I was ready to move on. We had been in Perry for about a week and the next stop on our journey was Cross City, FL.
The road was much more smooth from Perry, FL to Cross City, FL. On the way out of Tallahassee, we had to stop and walk up numerous hills and the trip took us all day. However, after checking out of the Perry KOA we rode for a good couple of hours and got closer to the city much sooner. Unfortunately, we ran out of water, which is not a thing to do on a hot day in Florida! Then the bicycles kept getting flat tires and we had to stop and pump them back up. My husband was getting tired and I kept pushing him on by taking smaller breaks. As soon as the tires were inflated we continued on.
Still, on one stop he insisted on taking a longer break. Seeing how much smoother the road was had really motivated me. Plus, I was looking forward to finding a hotel room when we got to Cross City, FL. Yet, I eased up a bit on him; partially because I knew we only had about 10 more miles to make it into the city. As we waited on the shoulder of the road, trying to figure out what to do with those worrisome flat tires a man pulled up in a big red pickup truck and shouted, “Hey! Got a flat?”. He gave us a ride on into Cross City and dropped us off at the Carriage Inn at my request. He was glad that I had chosen this location because he has to get to his job at the auto parts store which was just about next door to the inn.
When we arrived in the city my husband realized that we had left the air pump on the side of the road. For some reason, this seemed to amuse the nice gentleman that had given us a ride. That was rough, seeing as we had just bought that air pump at the Wal-Mart in Perry and my husband’s bike was already on a flat.
This little dinky motel was very expensive! About $80. 00 a night for two people. The internet there did not work and the place was old. It was clean but old and the guy that worked there (I think he was the owner) told us we could not take our bikes into the room, which was a thing I had become used to doing even in higher quality hotels. He said it was because there would be oil spots on the carpet.
Well, there went our dinner money. But in that position, I did not feel like I had much of a choice but to stay at this hotel. To top it off we had to buy a new air pump (ironically at the auto parts store where the guy that gave us the lift worked). My husband needed some time to fix his tire and I wanted to get some work done (which unfortunately I could not even do because of the poor internet speed). We bought a new air pump, some Ramen Noodles, and got some rest.
In the morning my husband told me that the air pump, a foot pump, did not work very well and he wanted to exchange it for the other one that was in the store (there were only two in the whole city). I went to the auto parts store and the guy that had given us the ride was behind the counter. He politely exchanged the first pump for the second, but not without introducing me as the lady that got a flat on a bike and left her pump by the side of the road.
I took the new air pump to my husband who was waiting outside the store. This pump was a traditional hand pump, but a few minutes into him pumping I heard a loud “Pop!”.
“Well,” he said ” This one’s broke. Go back and get the other one”. (Oh boy! Just what I needed!)
So I went back to the store. The guy was busy this time. I asked for the pump back – the one that I had just returned not a few minutes ago.
So we took off, or at least attempted too. However, we did not get more than two blocks away from the store when my husband announced that his tire was flat (again). So we stopped in a vacant lot. I spread out the blanket that I use to sit on when we take our breaks and waited for him to find a solution. He proceeded to put patch after patch on his tire, walking back and forth to the nearby tire shop to use their water for finding holes.
I was getting a bit anxious to continue on my Bicycle Florida trip. So I meditated and I prayed. There was no way I could spend another night in Cross City (emphasis on the “Cross” part of it). I sang and paced and prayed. Eventually, we were able to get back on the road.