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PROLOGUE #4: Cleared For Take Off
Well, not quite: there was considerably more coordination with Edward & Ewa; endless fretting over minimalist packing and the purchase of my new bike plus panniers, bike tools, clothes etc. Evenings spent pouring over maps; re-checking distances; worrying over unknowable events; concern about fitness; concern about booking accommodation... Booking flights; arranging busses form Boston to my starting point, Acadia National Park in Maine
Another issue was accommodation, specifically camping vs. motels. For budgetary reasons, I’d been thinking along the lines of taking a tent but staying at motels every third night or so to get cleaned up properly. For Ewa, this was a deal breaker: motels or no-go. I was happy to concede, reckoning that I could always buy a lightweight tent in Niagara, if I needed to, once our ways had parted.
Edward and I discussed mobile phones, maps vs. GPS, road bikes vs. hybrids, arrival time & coordination... you name it, we emailed it. He pre-booked accommodation for the first few nights. I took the train to Gatwick on the morning of Friday 29th June, feeling a little weird boarding an intercontinental flight with nothing but a couple of panniers and a bar-bag for luggage. Welcome to the world of the light-weight. Welcome to cycling across America.