DAY 7 of 7: Making a Christmas Memory Tour 2022
Day 7 (Final) of Mitch's "Making a Christmas Memory" Bicycle Tour. Baguio City to Home 264KMS
ALL PACKED WITH CHANGED SPOKES
I had two days of recovery in Baguio City just resting, got a haircut, eating pizza and pasta. I cleaned my room, and finished laundry, preached in a local church, and changed my two spokes. Ready for tomorrow!
My Ride out was at 0330 and the police at the first checkpoint on Kennon Road, Baguio City, nearly did NOT allow me to go down the 33+KMS mountain highway. They thought is was too dangerous and too busy with traffic. I did not argue, but simply assured them I was experienced, I've been this way before, I will be careful, it is my 7th day on the highway and I'm going home. They agreed and let me through.
Kennon Road is a good start because it is over 33KMS downhill. It is not a blazing speed downhill because it has too many short curves. You always need to be on your brakes, and when it is still dark, you really do, indeed, need to be careful, but it's a great way to start the day.
Normally, I will stop for an overnight in Tarlac City, but this time I decided to go all the way home 264KMS, which ended up taking me 22 hours. I met Jasper, a former student, now pastor, and businessman in Tarlac. We had a time of lunch and fellowship.
FEELS LIKE STEROIDS
My two days of recovery was not perfect, but helpful. I had pizza on Saturday and spaghetti at the church on Sunday. Both, are power foods for me. I had great energy and endurance - really for the whole day, really. The flat highway is a BIG DIFFERENCE from the mountains + for sure, my red blood cell count has increased from the elevations and thinner air of the days before.
RACE TO THE FINISH
It seemed like "EVERYONE" was rushing from the provinces to get back to Metro-Manila. I suppose, for many, they were going back to work on the 3rd also. Their vacations were finished and time to go home. I sensed that the traffic going my direction was more rushed than the opposite direction.
BIBLE SCHOOL STUDENT
At one of my stops in Bulacan Province, with only 40KMS to the finish, I met some guys that took interest in my trip. I gave them all stickers and one of them was a Bible school student.
If started to rain only 20KMS from home. At least in Manila, the rain is not cold and as punishing as in the mountains. I normally will keep riding without rain gear, but this time I sat it out. I had already come 240KMS. I thought I will try to stay dry this time.
Once I hit EDSA Blvd, I was already over 220KMS for the day and 21 hours. I actually felt sleepy here. Would you believe there are "rolling hills" on EDSA? Metro-Manila is not perfectly flat sea-level, believe it or not. That is why we have some "flood areas" and areas that are no problem after heavy rains.
While passing through Cubao at 12:30am, there were hundreds of people stranded that returned from the provinces, but now there are fewer taxis to take everyone home. It was sad. You could tell many of them were already exhausted from long bus travels, with backpacks, babies in arms, and some with large luggage. As it approached 0100AM, for sure, many of them will still be standing there at 0300+ What a terrible experience to return back to Manila for these travelers.
MOST DANGEROUS ROAD
I think, the most dangerous road on this whole trip was the one closest to home - Marcos Highway. There was the usual car racing going on and guys with their super motorcycles screaming down the lane. I even had to weave around a drunk guy on a bicycle! THIS was not good. A drunk guy trying to get home on a bicycle. I can't believe how much his life was in danger surrounded by this activity just mentioned above.
TILL NEXT TIME
Well, now it is updating posts, video editing time, and preparing for a 58 day evangelistic outreach with our team of 11 cross-country departing in five days. We will be traveling by land to Bicol, Samar, Leyte, Cebu (boat), Surigao, Butuan, Cagayan de Oro, Bukidnon, Davao and back to Mauban, Quezon Province my March 1st. Graduation of our Training Program is March 10. This means my bicycle will be collecting dust until March and I will be switching to driving over 5,000 KMS over the next few months. Blessed be the name of the LORD!!
Distance: 794.55KMS Moving Time: 48 hours and 32 minutes. Actual Hours of Event: 168 hours. Elevation Gains: 7,818M (25,649 feet) Average Speed: 16.4 km/h Time: 7 Riding Days
Bicycle Weight w/gear: 43 kilos (94 lbs). Mitch's Weight: 81 Kilos (180 lbs). Total Weight: 124 Kilos (273 lbs). Total Distance on this Bicycle since 2018: 24,000 KMS (14,912 Miles)
Watch for my 60 Day, 5,000KMS evangelistic "Philippine Loop Bicycle Tour" on my 60th Birthday in 2024. The Journey begins on [approx] January 10th and ends on March 15th, 2024.
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