We're Going to The End of the Line. Or....are we???? - Undaunted Porridge - CycleBlaze

August 18, 2018 to August 21, 2018

We're Going to The End of the Line. Or....are we????

Well it's all right, riding around in the breeze
Well it's all right, if you live the life you please
Well it's all right, even if the sun don't shine
Well it's all right, we're going to the end of the line
-The Traveling Wilburys

8/18-8/21/2018

We rode to Blue River reservoir yesterday.
Heart 4 Comment 0
This is the mostly empty lake, hemmed in by an earth dam.
Heart 3 Comment 0

We decided to camp two nights at Delta, so we took a 12 mile day ride to Blue River reservoir.  I don't know if it's seasonally full but it looks like it's been low or empty for quite awhile. The ride was fun and we took a little time to sit by the McKenzie on the way back to camp. 

Our final camp dinner for Undaunted Porridge was instant potatoes, canned chicken and canned green beans. Yep.  And it was good. Delicious canned chicken.  But I can't imagine we'll continue this meal plan after this, at least until we embark on our next adventure. 

Lets go water skiing!
Heart 3 Comment 0

Sunday's (8/19) ride into Eugene was the last long ride of this trip, which is hard to comprehend after leaving Portland in the moving truck 3 months and 5 days ago and spending the past 2 months and 27 days on the bikes.   

Old Yeller back in May
Heart 3 Comment 0

The McKenzie highway was pretty busy, with yokels and city slickers rushing back to town after a weekend at the river.  I was surprised by the aggressiveness and, in a few cases, the asshole-ness of the drivers.  The road is twisty with not much of a shoulder, and because it's on the TransAm route, a lot of cycle tourers and day riders use it, which sometimes causes entitled twits in 4,000-pound vehicles  to get their panties in a wad. But if everyone would calm the f#*πing hell down and slow down a little tiny bit, fewer people would end up on my secret A-hole Driver Revenge List. 

Most of the issues were related to incompetents driving too fast, but we were crop-dusted by another sad little man-boy with small hands and a smaller IQ.  But he will get his. Mmmmwwwwaaahahahaah!B

But the ride was mostly downhill with a slight headwind, so it was fairly easy over all. We followed the route on to Camp Creek Road in Walterville, which was nice due to the 89% reduction in traffic. This took us 8 miles into Springfield, arguably the home of The Simpsons. 

Speaking of Springfield, if you have a hankering to explore interesting and attractive cities in Oregon, I highly recommend you give Springfield a pass. It's not attractive. Well, at least the section we traversed wasn't. But in case any avid readers (?) are from Springfield, I just want to clarify my comments by saying that it is, indeed, unattractive and you should move.  

The well pump water was a little rusty but it probably had plenty of iron.
Heart 2 Comment 0
A disturbing Christmas store on the road to Eugene
Heart 4 Comment 0
Heart 2 Comment 0
The Willamette river going into Eugene.
Heart 2 Comment 0

We had reservations in Eugene for the next two nights at the Best Western right across the street from the University of Phil Knight, er, Oregon so we rode here, mostly on the sidewalk as traffic was nuts. 

This is a college basketball arena.
Heart 1 Comment 0
The study building just for student athletes. The athletes go in, watch Barney videos and Sesame Street, then milk and cookies, then nap time. Come on, that's funny!
Heart 3 Comment 0
Looking in the student athlete "study" building. I thought I heard "Sunny day, chasing the clouds away..." *
Heart 3 Comment 0

   *Alternative fact that I can't prove.  

Heart 4 Comment 0

We walked around the the U of O campus and were awestruck by he construction, mostly on athletic projects. Gotta keep the gravy train rolling, I guess. We moseyed to Pegasus Pizza for dinner and then we crashed in the room. 

Celebratory pizza at the end of the line
Heart 4 Comment 0

We did some errands (REI) on Monday morning and then worked on the journal. Today (8/21,) is our departure date.  I don't know if I covered this yet, but we are ending the ride in Eugene and taking the train to Portland. We've both ridden the route between Eugene and Portland and, with the heat and shitty wildfire air (Thanks Canada!), this was the best option. 

The train was scheduled for 12:30 and we arrived at the station to find that it had been cancelled and we would take a motorcoach at 2:30. With some extra time on our hands, we walked over to the Morning Glory Cafe and had enormous plates of French toast for second breakfast. 

Enormous plates of French toast at the cafe. One day we are gonna have to stop eating like this.
Heart 4 Comment 0
Jen took photos of art inside the cafe
Heart 1 Comment 0
Heart 1 Comment 0
Heart 4 Comment 2
Rachael AndersonThis was our favorite lunch spot when we lived in Salem and would do Bicycle Loop from Salem to Corvallis and back.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Ron GrumbyTo Rachael AndersonIt's great, and always busy.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago

When the coach (bus) got there we were instructed to take the panniers off and load the bikes and bags into the baggage compartment below the bus. An agent was helping me load and all seemed well until I got on the bus and my back started to stiffen and spasm. I must have wrenched something when I was bent over trying to slide the bike in below, and it hurt like crap.  We rode 2300+ miles and, aside from Jen's ankle wound and a few minor scratches, no injuries. And now I cranked my back in a very stupid way. The bus was nice and clean; it's one of those fancy motorcoach deals; but my freaking back was killing me. 

People think we are crazy for retiring early and riding our bikes. And then they get in the car and do this twice a day.
Heart 2 Comment 0

When we arrived in Portland, Jen, being of sound mind and body, took the bikes and bags from the bus and we loaded them up for the 5 mile ride to the home of our friends and fellow Hostile Actors Bruce and Andrea in SW Portand, our home for the next 2-3 days. 

Although it was painful to walk, bend, stretch, scratch, think, sneeze, etc, I had no issues riding.  When we rolled up to their house, Andrea, Bruce, Scott and Rachael and Jeff, Kristen and Juniper Arnim, all fellow bike tourers (except Juniper who is a small and very cute baby) greeted us with applause and champagne. To top it off, Tumbling Tumbleweeds was playing in the background. You might recall that song from this post.

We had a great time talking to everyone and appreciated the support, advice and ridicule they extended to us during Undaunted Porridge. Scott and Rachael are heading to Croatia in a couple days to begin a 5 month tour. 

The Surlys at Union Station in Portland.
Heart 3 Comment 0
Subversive international cycle tourers reunited (minus Kristen and Juniper)
Heart 5 Comment 1
Judy & Sharon Thieme-RahnWhat a wonderful welcome home/end of your first journey celebration. Nice to have such awesome bike touring friends :-)
Reply to this comment
6 months ago

I closed out the post from a couple weeks ago with a cliffhanger of sorts. 

What's next for the Grumbys? Are we going to buy an expensive McMansion, his-and-her BMWs and settle into a life of watching cable news and reality TV? Uh, nope! We don't have everything figured out yet. In fact, we have very little figured out. But here is what we know:

1. The original plan of continuing as bike nomads on the Southern Tier has been scuttled. We will continue to wander around, but are looking at options that will provide a temporary and intermittent home base between bike tours.  Which leads me to the cliffhanger I left you with a couple weeks ago:

  • One option we are considering is buying a small, used motorhome, nothing bigger than 24 feet, and use it as a home when we aren't biking. This gives us an affordable, portable, livable space without having to buy real estate before we know where we'd like to settle. And we can drive it to all of your houses and park it in front for months at time.  This is far from a done deal, but it's an intriguing option. 
  • We are exploring the idea of house sitting for 1-2 months at a time in various places between rides. There are tons of opportunities listed on sites like  Trustedhousesitters.com and Mind My House. If we do this we would probably buy a cheap used car big enough to schlep the bikes around. 

2. We will also be spending some time with family. There is a September wedding coming up in Palm Springs (avg temp 101!) after which we'll hang in San Diego and Colorado for a bit. 

3. Pizza and Keebler snack crackers are delicious. Not together. 

4.  We are evaluating a month-long stay in a couple of potentially viable Grumby landing spots in Colorado and New Mexico at first, and then probably other locations later.  

5. We decided against riding the entire Southern Tier but are looking at a route from West Texas to east Texas to see some friends and family. 

6.  I will be looking into getting calf impants on account of the fact that, after almost 2400 miles of riding in headwinds, horrible rolling hills and long uphill passes, they should be enormous. But they're not. 

What the hell????
Heart 3 Comment 1
Judy & Sharon Thieme-RahnI shall not attach a picture of my calves after just 10 local bike rides this summer - you'd definitely be jealous :-)))
Reply to this comment
6 months ago

So while the Undaunted Porridge phase of our journey is over, the journal is not complete. There will be ride statistics, summaries, observations, thank yous, griveances and reflections posted here over the next several weeks.  It's also likely that The Singing Cycling Cowboy will make another appearance. We'll also provide updates on our longer term cycling plans when we figure them out. Thanks for following along so far. 

Which way will we go next?
Heart 6 Comment 8
Michael SnowAre you still in Portland? xoxo Elwood Snow
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Ron GrumbyTo Michael SnowHi Michael, yes we are. I'm not sure if we'll get up that way this visit but we'll be back in town in a couple months. Hope you and Tom are doing well.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Bruce LellmanGreat journal. Thank you. It was most amusing, educational, entertaining even and now I know how many more things can be termed "delicious". You better just keep posting because I will constantly be looking for new posts from you as I have for more than two months.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Michael SnowTo Ron GrumbyHope to see you later! Tom and I have been doing great ☺☺
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Scott BeanblossomEast Texas is calling...
I am brewing a nice porridge IPA and I need help naming it.
Congratulations on the long haul!
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Ron GrumbyTo Bruce LellmanThanks!
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Ron GrumbyTo Scott BeanblossomHmm that sounds like a challenge right up my alley!!
We are working on our Texas plans as we speak so I'll be in touch. Thanks for reading!!
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Judy & Sharon Thieme-RahnTo Scott BeanblossomCan I suggest Undaunted IPA - Just a thought
Reply to this comment
6 months ago

Today's ride: 57 miles (92 km)
Total: 2,257 miles (3,632 km)

Rate this entry's writing Heart 10
Comment on this entry Comment 8
Dan SuchanekRon and Jen, thank you very much for including us in your journey, I looked forward to reading the new posts as quick as you were putting them out. You are Always welcome to park your RV in my driveway.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Ron GrumbyTo Dan SuchanekThanks Dan. We might take you up on that.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Scott AndersonOh, right, Grumbys, keep us all in suspense about your life plans just a little longer. What teases! Pretty cheap way to keep folks coming back to your journal.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Judith CappausWow, what a journey! I’ll miss the postings, too, so now you’ll have to call me every few days to catch me up! Ha ha! Look forward to some great family time in Palm Springs in a couple of weeks, & I’ll be sure to bring your “wedding clothes” so you won’t have to show up in the same ones you have been wearing for the past 3+ months!! XOXO
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Ron GrumbyTo Scott AndersonHaha, we are in suspense too... It's like we are building and airplane while flying it.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Ron GrumbyTo Judith CappausThanks for reading and I'm sure Nicole will appreciate me bit wearing my smelly shorts and shirt.
Reply to this comment
7 months ago
Judy & Sharon Thieme-RahnWhat an amazing fun journal to read. I LOVE the last photo, a perfect rendition of your Undaunted Porridge card. We are looking forward to the next chapter of your retirement journey.
Reply to this comment
6 months ago
Greg SpinolaWe went dancin' across the USA
On that crazy king's highway
Too much passion
Too much play
We went dancin', dancin', dancin' across the USA

I guess the above would have been more fitting if I substituted "cycling" for "dancin," but I think you guys get the idea. Love you guys. Thanks for sharing your adventure. Although I didn't get to this journal as often as I would have liked, I never visited without experiencing a feeling of awe and admiration. You guys are a national treasure. Peace.
Reply to this comment
6 months ago