Last night was my first night sleeping in a tent and I am going to call it 99% successful. I can neither confirm nor deny that I took an Ambien to help me sleep because the fire house was having a party and our neighbors were loud. I can confirm, however, that at about 1am I needed to pee and was sleepier than usual. I wobbled sleepily off into the woods to take care of business and then realized I didn't know which tent was mine. After some sleepy investigation, I found home.
Then at 5:30am, we got up, packed our gear and got breakfast from a local vendor. It's tricky to eat a low carb, ketogenic diet in this thing. Luckily, we found breakfast burritos and I ate the ham and eggs from the middle. This would be the first of three pork- based meals. Ham and eggs for breakfast, a leftover porkchop for a snack and pork ribs for lunch. For dinner, I went with a vegetarian option and got sweet corn ice cream. I'll blow through those carbs in the first 20 miles tomorrow.
After breakfast, we boarded the bus and began the trek from east to west. I really am awestruck by how beautiful the state is. Dare I call it bucolic. We met a guy who has done this ride 12 times and gave us the low down on all the best food. The bus company showed us the RAGBRAI documentary A Million Spokes. For the life of me, I can't figure out why they'd show us a movie about all the people who crash on RAGBRAI. Strange insists that it was about more than that, but that's all I remember.
We made it to the start town and it's incredible. It's really, truly lovely. Cell service isn't great to share pictures, but I will. People everywhere, a huge party and so much to eat and drink (although Strange and I are largely abstaining because I have a hard time drinking and riding). We saw our first passed out drunk guy. I hurt for him.
We also met up with our team and met the people we didn't know. They are solid, hilarious people and I'm looking forward to riding with them. They've taken to mentoring us and have already taught us the rites of initiation for people new to the tour..
It should look real good with a skirt when I go back to work. Pictures to follow when the service improves.