We Call It a Day and Promise to Be Back

We spent the night in a place with history.

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And we met someone who appreciates an aspect of our history.

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Lisa grew up in Syracuse, NY, and studied and vacationed in Jeffrey’s native Thousand Islands region.  She and her partner regularly celebrate their anniversary at this hotel.  She pursues a helping profession in the retirement field.  She spoke of how nice it is to see Muslim refugee parents walking their children to school, laughing and at peace, in her Sacramento neighborhood.  And of how sad that some of her neighbors blame local crime on “the Muslims”.  It’s no surprise that Lisa thinks asylum applicants deserve a guarantee of counsel to pursue their claims.

Leigh works at the hotel.  A bartender, we imagine he has seen and heard it all.

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He asked about the Ride and gave Jeffrey valuable route advice, warning that we should stick to the coast because inland routes go through snowy mountain passes.  After yesterday’s hills, we’d been wondering if there is a better way for us to go.  Now we know there isn’t.

Our rear tire had gone soft.  Jeffrey inflated it.  He didn’t find a leak, but saw some cuts and will replace it soon.

The morning fog cleared and we set off for Bodega Bay.  What a beautiful day!

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A mile and a quarter (2 km) up the road—up a steep ¾ mile hill—the breathlessness that worsened yesterday, returned and brought Jeffrey to a halt.  He waited for it to pass.  It didn’t.  We were near the top of the hill …

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Close—yet too far.

… but Jeffrey couldn’t reach it.  And he felt too weak to pedal us back to town.  Uh-oh.

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The descent is steeper than it looks.

Jeffrey did something out of character.  He called 911.

Three medics and a state trooper came from Bodega Bay Paramedic Rescue, the Sonoma County Fire Department, and the California Highway Patrol.  Jeffrey’s vital signs and EKG were fine.  But in light of Jeffrey’s recent medical history, the medics asked to take him to the hospital.  Jeffrey declined.  Yet he was concerned.

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These fine people were provided by the community (also known as the government) to help Jeffrey, a stranger. No questions about papers or pedigree. That’s the America we love. Jeffrey regrets not recording their names.

Jeffrey rested a while at this, our closest approach to Seattle, 15500 California Highway 1.

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Then we turned and made our way back to Valley Ford.

Our generous friends Julie and Nattie interrupted their Sunday hike and drove 210 miles round trip to bring us to their home, where we started this Ride, in San Jose.

Nancy alerted Dr. Shujaat, the lung expert.  The doctor phoned and told Jeffrey that the embolism evidently has not dissolved enough to restore circulation to Jeffrey’s left lung.  The lung inflates, but no oxygen is absorbed.

Jeffrey has been propelling us on one lung.

Dr. Shujaat prescribed time and rest.  The recovery can’t be rushed.  He respected our Ride attempt.  We don’t know what we can—and cannot—do unless we try.

Quotable Theodore Roosevelt (he died in 1919 at age 60) admired “the strenuous life”.

Let us rather run the risk of wearing out than rusting out.  We like that.

Ninety percent of the work in this country is done by people who don’t feel good.  Perhaps.

Courage is not having the strength to go on; it is going on when you don’t have the strength.  That, Mr. President, is nonsense.  “To go on” requires strength.  For now, Jeffrey doesn’t have it.

We hope he’s strong enough to go on the Deep South Ride, as planned, in May.  We hope to resume the Seattle Ride, perhaps in the fall, perhaps next spring.

We’ll be fine.

We’ll be back.

Stay tuned.

 

19 thoughts on “We Call It a Day and Promise to Be Back

  1. I have been both worried and in awe of you taking on this trip, Jeffrey. Glad to hear you are listening to your body–and your doctors! Much love and healing to you. Hope you are back home safely with Nancy soon.

  2. Jeffrey, I wish I could express how admirable your effort is. So many of us do not know how to act on our principles, and you provide an example of how to do it. Thank you. Get well and then get back to your task.

  3. So sorry, dear friend, but sounds like you’re making the wise choice. You are such a fine example of the kind of action we all should be doing to repair our fragile democracy. We need you in good health.

  4. We will indeed stay tuned in the certainty that you WILL be fine and WILL be back. Thank you for all you are doing.

  5. Sorry that you are not yet healed. Your body spoke and you listened. I am glad you are taking care of you. I know you will continue your work elsewhere while getting stronger. Wishing you good health.

  6. Good decision. We’ll be praying for your continuing recovery and your next adventure!

  7. I know you’re disappointing, but your right lung must feel pretty relieved. It has pushed forward in a heroic effort.

  8. You are so brave but I’m glad that you are also sensible and not reckless with your health. Rest up and heal.

  9. Sorry to hear of the bump in the road. But so glad you are taking a breather while you heal. It will take time. It is for the best. And who knows, maybe we can organize a relay ride and help you finish it when you are ready. Prayers for your rest and healing and safe reunion with beloved Nancy.

  10. So sorry to read that the ride has ended temporarily, but I’m sure glad you called for assistance when you did!! I know you and Joey will be back out there soon. I hope you get good rest back home and can enjoy a bit of spring in the city!!!

  11. So sorry that Jeffrey had to cut his trip short. Wishing him a speedy recovery and am looking forward to the next Ride, when he and Joey can be back on the road again, putting their feet to the pedals.
    Zei Gezundt…

  12. Truly an inspiring effort — the world would be a better place with more folks like you. Kol hakavod!

  13. Y
    Jeffrey – you gave it your all, but I’m glad you called for help when you realized you needed it. Wishing you healing and a timely recovery.

  14. You are amazing Jeffrey and as always I’m full of admiration to you and your work to actually make changes in the world. I’m sorry, you need to stop as I’m sure that you don’t want to. However I hope that you allow your self, this time to invest in your rest as much as you do in your ride. Sending you much love.

  15. Jeffrey-
    Your determination and devotion to help those in need are endless. I hope that you will grant yourself the same “generosity” to heal.
    With love – Mona

  16. The “other” Roosevelt, FDR, said, “There are many ways of going forward, but one way of standing still.” Whether you’re mounting your courageous ride, Jeffrey, or pausing it when your health demands that you do so, you inspire all of us to go forward in a better way.

  17. Dear Jeffrey, I am happy and relieved that you got help and are recovering. Take care and best wishes from Germany
    Heike + Horst

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