Slow, Like Sweet Molasses


Camilla (left) and Debra (right)

“Welcome back!” came the call from all three ladies lounging in the living room. “Dinner is in the oven!” “How was Williamsburg?”  Christina and I thanked Debra and Joy and Camilla, removing our helmets and moving eagerly to the kitchen, sharing small tidbits of our day through mouthfuls of cheesy baked spaghetti squash and broccoli. Debra listened, nodding as we described our curiosity of the six blocks preserving colonial America with horse drawn carriages, an armory where gunpowder and rifles were stored, a seamstress who described clothing of the time, and all around, actors in costume, meld education and art. Just a block over we enjoyed an All-You-Can-Sample buffet of peanuts, peanuts of such variety and flavors, we easily declared it our favorite shop. Custard later called our name, just after we pursued a bookstore. Later, we retired, roof over our heads, thinking about how our hosts, Debra and Camilla who we thought of as family, welcomed us to stay in out of the rain that morning and join them for yet another night. After a week back on the road, it was all coming back. image A brief summary takes us back to DC. We spent 10 weeks in the care of the Langes. We baked, we wrote, we lazed about, itching more and more to get back on the road, but finding difficulties in casting off, hampered by sinus issues, a drilled tooth, and 8 stitches. You can ask Christina about her luck. When we finally left, it was with the promise to each other that we will be going slowly; our race through the East Coast left us craving more than flashing scenery in our bid to stay ahead of winter’s hounds. And so we have been. Virginia squeezed 13 days out of us, in 300 miles; our first 1200 were done in 26. One day we went 1.56 miles, accepting an invitation to see  Suffolk and hear its history from Dave and Wilbur, owner and associate of Brandon House furniture. We stop frequently, enjoy the company of others, have explored an abandoned amusement park, read. A book on edible flora led us to roadside spring onions, and we sat enjoying coffee while being interviewed for a local paper. image Bike tourists inherently understand what it is to travel slowly, but seldom do even they find its spirit, bringing the breakneck mentality of the rat race to a place that requires just the opposite. Its a learned skill, I think. After so much conditioning that starts with timed tests in grade school, pressures to graduate with more honors, double majoring, acquiring a better job, working more hours, retiring early… After perpetual seeking, it takes effort to stop making superficial efforts. image image So we go slow. Stop when a museum catches our eye. Wave to a stranger and have a conversation over some coffee. Listen and learn. Linger over long days that will seem far too short when the moon takes its seat amongst blankets of stars.



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