Day Three.

Max V. Shaul to Northampton Beach.

Rain all through the night. I stayed dry, but the atmosphere inside the tent was very humid, so I was covered with a thin sheen of moisture which made for a somewhat unpleasant rest.

Awoke about 6am and packed up in a dull drizzle. Leaving the campground the entire valley was enveloped in a cloud. I rode 7 miles to Middleburgh where I stopped at M & J’s cafe for breakfast. The cafe itself was an homage– a shrine, really, to Coca-cola. The only downside was it was infested with flies. They were everywhere. I ordered something small and ate quickly, the presence of the flies was pretty bad but it was a steady, deadening rain outside. Tough choice.

Down the road I stopped at a gas station and noticing booths with outlets I decided to have another cup of coffee and recharge my phone. No sooner had I sat down than two retirees took the booth behind me and started talking non-stop about the old days… jawing endlessly about fishing holes and the quality of local sandwhiches (bad) and their prices (high) and that got me laughing to myself. I kept picturing them as Grampa Simpson and Jasper.

I took off and got as far as Scoharie before I started to notice the bike was not moving as easily as it should. I checked the tires and the bags but nothing was wrong. I did have wet clothes but the extra water weight seemed negligible.

Finally, I guess it was me. I had run out of gas. I ate a bag of trail mix and within ten minutes I was climbing hills like nobody’s business. In fact, I think I started cycling more effectively than I have on the trip to date. Weird, though… I didn’t feel weak or tired. The bike just got heavy.

I did so well that I was at the forty mile mark by noon as I pulled into Fonda. I met a couple who were riding from Boston to Niagara Falls and chatted with them for a bit.

I ate at a new ‘upscale’ McDonald’s in Fultonville. Everyone was on their best behavior because it was the unveiling of the new design, and the suits were there for photo-ops. I don’t hate McDonald’s by any stretch, but I’ll admit it’s pretty bad for you.Turd-polishing.

Still need a few provisions. Currently drying the tent and wet clothes on a picnic table outside the Fonda municipal building. Most of the scenery today has been a little boring, but I guess what can you expect between the Catskills and the Adirondacks? It’s rural and pleasant enough. Scoharie was cool.

Outside Middleburgh

The air here smells of lavender and the weeping willows tower over houses.

***

Right by the water my ass. More like right by the mud and mosquitoes. Northampton Beach campground hardly qualifies as a campground. It’s got campsites, yes, but the people who utilize the sites are equipped with RVs, gas grills, gazebos, multi-room tents, the works. And the campground is replete with mini-golf, ice cream trucks, volleyball, etc.

The woman at the booth charged me $22.75 for a spot of ground which I will use all of twelve hours, more likely ten or eight. She said it was right by the water, the water being Great Sacandaga Lake, which Randi informed me is man-made. Figures.

Jeff and randi are my campsite neighbors. Randi is from Buffalo and Jeff is from Rochester. Or maybe vice-versa. Either way, they are nice midwestern types and have been very hospitable. This journal shall disparage neither Jeff nor Randi who invited me over for a beer.

Mohawk River between Fonda - Fultonville

Northampton Beach

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