Day 7: Wickenburg, AZ, to Phoenix, AZ

I ended today at the home of a couple old friends, Jarrett and Angie Haskovec, in Chandler, AZ. Jarrett, never having been a cyclist before, has just bought a new road bike to train for a century ride around Lake Tahoe in June. He’s raising money for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society through his ride — the right thing to do, he thinks, since he survived Hodgkin and non-Hodgkin lymphoma a few years back. To celebrate, we hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and back out in about 30 hours round-trip, something he has already forgiven me for. Here’s his fundraising page if you’d like to read his story.

Oh, and Angie is no slouch, having raised $8,800 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society by running a marathon the year after Jarrett beat the diseases.

Tony and I were thinking we’d roll into Phoenix with a short day today, but we managed to make it pretty long, 61 miles, with the last 25 or so clogged by stoplights and traffic in Surprise, Peoria and Phoenix. We dropped our bikes at Curt Kremer’s house, after meeting him on the canal bike path, about 200 feet out the back door of his office in Phoenix. I am about to take some NyQuil and sleep for 10 hours.

Exchange at restaurant today:
Tony: He’s a vegetarian.
Waitress [skeptically]: Oh, you’re a vegetarian? Huh. How’s that work out for you?
Guy in Brendan’s head: Not so good at all. I have a hard time. I actually was barely able to pedal my fully-loaded bike 375 miles over the past 6 days, with a cold. In fact, I’m barely hanging on.

This is about as close as I got to Tony all day. Every once in a while, he'd stop and let me catch up. Once, while standing on the shoulder, we had a brand-new experience: We were passed by someone else on a bike. Some guy out for a morning ride near Surprise.

And then, out of nowhere.

We passed through about a dozen of these along the canal path in Phoenix today, and in the one at 43rd Avenue and Peoria, there was a man lying on the ground with fluid coming out of his mouth. Tony called 911 as soon as we exited the tunnel, and we waited until a fire truck arrived. Hope he was all right.

Tony under Camelback Mountain, where my buddy Dustin first tried to teach me to climb about 5 years ago, my buddy Bruce regaled me with the logistics of navigating Reno cathouses in the late '50s, and atop which author JR Moehringer lost his virginity in the '80s.


10 responses to “Day 7: Wickenburg, AZ, to Phoenix, AZ

  1. Want to go climbing tomorrow?? Hah..

    I was driving up to Flag last week with a friend who had never heard the DBD. I had “Friendship is a used Bicycle” on the ipod so we listened in the car. Its crazy to think only a few years ago you started to ride and now your pedaling across America! Totally inspirational!

    Keep it up guys!

  2. Found you. Got caught up on your past few days. Tell Tony, you know what they say about tall guys, big feet,big……!!

  3. Hang in there, brother. And keep the posts coming. Warning, I was almost run over in Apache Junction on my bike by a little old lady in a big car. I looked in my mirror and saw nothing but car, and dived into the ditch. Petty sure she never saw me. AJ is full of retirees……375 your FIRST 6 days….wow

  4. Hey B, hope the rest and NyQuil did you good last night. Also nothing wrong with taking an extra day to recover a bit and chill with your friends in Chandler. You’re doing amazing!

  5. Ride 375mi with a cold and whatta you get? Phoenix! Tomorrow’s post can be about your psychedelic NyQuil dreams…. You’re our heroes, guys!

  6. Keep up the good blog for America! Might need to make Emergen-C part of the routine. And Syd you know B does not believe in a extra day of rest if anything he is going to ………………………well you know what i was going to say.

  7. Wow. You might have saved a life today.

  8. By the way, Judy’s sister Pam lives in Surprise.

  9. Brendan, I hope the NyQuil did it’s job and you got a good night’s sleep so you can enjoy your time with the Haskovec’s.

  10. 100 pounds of deer meat vs. no deer meat…(talk to Skinny about this).

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