GOR – Day 7: FEELING GOOD (Portland to Port Fairy, VIC) 18 March 2007

Our itinerary has us scheduled to ride 70k today, but we rode over 100 (62 miles). JimAnd this was Irena’s longest-ever ride of her cycling career (she alternately denies and claims us Newkirks as a family – I know some of you can relate!).

Jim and I started out early from Portland, and we got a good laugh on me right off the bat: As I rode ahead of him out of the caravan park turning LEFT (which is like turning RIGHT in the U.S.), I was grinning and thinking to tell him that I am really getting the hang of this left-side, right-side of the road stuff… I looked right, then left, then promptly -automatically- crossed over to the right hand side! And just as I realized what I had done, Jim shouts “LINDA!!�

He and I had a fabulous run along the ocean and really good speeds down some lovely hills, while Patricia and Irena drove out to stop and ride back to meet us. We planned it perfectly and met exactly half way to/from the car. Wind TurbinesThen we swapped drivers and did the same routine again to Port Fairy, our stop for the night, passing mostly cattle ranches and farms, and a wind farm with those beautiful giant wind turbines. We checked into a nice large cottage only 1 block from the beach shortly after noon. After a huge lunch of Pat’s veggie sandwiches, they napped while I tried to find an internet cafe; I did find a place but it was snail-pace slow, and then the connection got hung up on me – very frustrating.

We then took off on another 15 mile ride on rolling hills along the beach which was one of our most fun rides – crashing waves and volcanic rocks and surfers and horseback riders *in the surf* on one side of the road, and lovely vacation homes on the other. IrenaQuote of the Day: “You know you are a serious cyclist when one of our group says “I’m not going back until I get up to 100k, so let’s do a few more loops…â€?, and the others all say “OK!â€?

I have now ridden almost 350 (347) miles in one week! Patricia has ridden nearly 400, Jim just over 400, and Irena 264 – she started out this trip sick and with a bum knee, and will now probably out-ride us all, given her 30-year-old skiing legs and competitive spirit.