Friday, July 18, 2008

To Bangor Maine

I woke up in the woods needing more water and sleep than what I had and what I got. Got breakfast from an attractive, but non quick-coffee-bringing waitress. I was waiting for the free shuttle off this island, and took my panniers off to get my bicycle on the front rack of the bus. I noticed a broken spoke. I wasn't very surprised or upset by this. I took it to the shop, and I swear they had it taken care of in about a half hour. I really wished I was doing the repair myself. I like when I build and fix my own wheels, because I know I'm going to make it mechanically good and not just tweak around until it looks good. I'm not saying that's what happened. I just trust myself with that stuff best. I was more than pleased that they were able to perform on the spot. I know a lot of shops can't perform like that. Bar Harbor Bicycles carries respectable machines and appears to have a very good service department. They seem to be excited about bicycles and breakfasts. I got on the shuttle.

My directions from where the shuttle let me off had me on 1-A to Bangor within ten miles. My directions, as I said, were concocted in 1993. There's more cars now, and the book wasn't exactly screaming the praises of 1-A in the first place. I played along for a couple miles. I went through my directions and saw that I wasn't using any other roads for many many miles. Fuck this! Time for the thumb. I had a ride from a friendly talkative fellow within about 3 minutes. He took me right into town, pointed shit out, and dropped me off right at the library. No need for so much as names, just talking.

Out of the library, and wait a few minutes, and then the rain started. That was the first rain I felt 'caught' in. I knew it had to happen. At 7:21pm I was sitting in a bar, drinking blueberry ale and eating a sammich. I was kinda waiting out the rain. I didn't feel social. I could have probably benefited from putting on my superman social suit, but I just didn't have it. I couldn't even stay in the bar, and in spite of the rain I went out. I sat in an empty doorway for awhile. It wasn't raining hard. Only enough to get me and my shit all wet. I think that's what they call a steady drizzle. I got on my bicycle and rode around randomly looking for a good place to exist. It was dark and rainy, and not the best time for finding a hiding spot. I rode on a beautiful closed path by the river, but that area didn't feel right. I rode around more, and eventually ended up riding straight out of town. I found some true enough woods with a decent spot within a few miles. I was up a hill on a flat spot well above the road. I laid out my sleepshit, and realized that I lost the pole for my bivy sack. I think it now belongs to the Harbor Walk. My sleep was very damp and scattered, but I got it. I had strong dreams and laid around until about 7:30. It rained some, and I put the operation into 'dry suffocation' mode - when the rain let up I put it back into 'bitta rain on my head' mode. It was all pretty damp. The trick about not having the pole: mosquitos get right up in your ear and yes they can get you through the netting. So I use a garment for a pillow with one stray sleeve wrapped around my head, over my ear. That sleeve keeps the netting mostly off my skin. The skeeters gave me only a slight working over. They mostly just harassed.

Did I say that I felt like the trip was slipping away from me? It's not a bad time - I just need to get punched in the face and wake up somewhere else.

I don't like writing about drinking so much, but it's an honest account and I'm writing what I'm thinking with a detailed mental account taking precedence over making it sound like a magazine article. Here it is. I know I'm drinking too much, almost always. Am I trying to control it? Not very hard. I always seem to need some kind of breaking point. This trip seems to be full of just slathering myself in whatever I want. At around 6 o'clock the booze light kicks on. I don't know very much more than that.

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