D40: Run Movie

D40: Run Movie

71,18km – 9H37′

We were inspired by another hot and beautiful day, as well as some scenic roads. Serge, alias “CinéRun” is trigger happy and got some fast shots from his Go Pro that he carries with him. He is ready to shoot as soon as he has something to say or show. An example is when he met a certain Marshall at Lake Placid who asked him what he was doing, since he had seen him the day before yesterday as well as today on the road. Serge explained that he was running between Miami and Anchorage. I leave it up to you to imagine the expression on Marshall’s face.
Orange trees, lakes and more orange trees. At about 1pm Serge complained of a headache so I gave him an over the counter pain reliever. Mamie, if you speak to Serge on the phone please ask him to wear his hat as protection against the sun. And please also stress that he must eat well. I find that Serge isn’t eating enough and soon he will be reduced to skin and bones. As a matter of fact, he has trouble eating a proper evening meal because he says he has been eating all day long and has had enough. He has 150 to 200 calories at each of the 13 refuelings, to which one must add breakfast consisting of a glass of 3-fruit juices, a kiwi, 1 bowl of coffee without sugar and bread with jam. But in the evening fatigue, combined with the impression of having eaten all day long, leaves him without appetite so he only nibbles.
We have breakfast and our evening meal in our hotel room. It’s fast, easy and economical.
I think you will see in the photos and videos what our days are like. It seems to be getting hotter and hotter. Easter approaches, with little chocolate rabbits here, rather than church bells. Serge was particularly satisfied with his day on the road. As for me, I don’t know where the time goes!

D39: The road of birds, orange and lemon trees, cars and trucks

70,18km – 10H06′
We were on (State Road) SR29 all day. We went through two towns: Immokalee and La Belle. All day long we were able to admire beautiful birds, which are quite wild and not willing to have their picture taken. In a small book “True Tales of the Everglades” I read that at the beginning of the last century there were feather hunters. They killed the birds for their feathers and sold them to milliners who used them to decorate ladies’ hats. These feathers brought such a high price that even when the federal government passed a law to stop the killing, it was so profitable that the hunters continued to kill the birds in Florida for their feathers.
The citrus route. Hidden from our view behind high banks are hundreds of acres of citrus trees. They are irrigated by canals and laden with fruit that ripens in the Florida sunshine. We continue to be in a rather swampy area. This morning at 7am we passed a considerable number of gray and red vehicles which resembled school busses (which are yellow) that were carrying Mexican laborers to work in the orchards. As a matter of fact, in Florida I wonder if the first language is not Spanish…. I even found “Arroz con Leche” for Serge in a Mexican “greasy spoon”. It is rare to find it in the US, where all milk products are highly pasteurized.
Cars and trucks flash by at 100 km/hour and Serge, on the shoulder of the road, started his day stressed by this traffic. He sweated a lot the first two hours because he suffered from hypoglycemia caused by this stress. After having eaten well he found his running legs. I find that he does not eat much sugar. He prefers salty food.
In short, this day on the road was not very pleasant and the towns were not pretty, even if one of them is named La Belle. One positive point for our runner, who suffered from the noise, is that he had the wind at his back all day…..
Tomorrow we will take the wide Highway 27 which heads toward Sebring.

D38: Brown Panthers, March sunshine

D38: Brown Panthers, March sunshine

70,6km – 9H54′

How do we choose a route and why do we take one road instead of another?  It’s a good question.  Generally speaking, we have to choose between the city, i.e. traffic, stop lights and easy access conveniences, or less populated areas, which are more comfortable for the runner but where there are fewer places to sleep and replenish supplies.  Of course, depending on the country and geography, there may not be much choice.  In Florida we could choose to head due North by US 1, along the East Coast, where there is a succession of beaches and resorts.  We chose to go through the center of the state and see the wonders of the Everglades, before heading between Orlando and Tampa in order to miss as many of the bigger cities as possible, before reaching Georgia.  I love deciphering maps and having them talk to me.  Now with Street View it’s easier to study a route and in spite of the GPS, I still use traditional maps that I can touch and contemplate at leisure without Internet.

And today we were not disappointed because Serge saw 2 panthers on the road, lots of birds and in the canal which follows the road, crocodiles.  On foot, he seems to see more things than I do from the car.

The temperature is the same as yesterday, with a stronger south-easterly wind.  On RN 29, there are shoulders and large grassy spots where I can park.  A few drivers stopped to ask if we were OK or needed help, as much for me in the vehicle as for Serge, whom one might think is alone and lost.  I have to say that there are no pedestrians on these roads and a runner is a curiosity.

After the 20th km we headed due North on a succession of straight lines which are impressive.  Aside from the crossing of US 41 and US 29, at km 20, where there is a tourist center and a service station, we crossed no village.  It is solitude that Serge and I like a lot.  Loners that we are, disconnected from information and news, we are finally in our bubble and both had time to think.  It surprises me to realize that being continually active in our day-to-day life keeps us from settling into our thoughts and reflecting on things.

I will sign off and return to my meditation before action is required at the end of the stage and where time has to be optimized in order to do everything (management of videos and photos, which takes time) and to get to bed at a decent hour.

 

The irony of it all is that the stage finished in a huge curve, after dozens of km in a straight line.

D37 Flatness and straightness

D37 Flatness and straightness

On the day of the program US41, a single straight and flat road (75m of elevation) along the Tamiami Canal. We crossed two nature reserves: Everglades National Park and Big Cypress National Preserve. These protected areas are home to flora and especially a variety of wildlife: multitudes of species of birds, crocodiles, panthers, and closer to the sea colonies of pelicans. Everglades flora are characterized by thousands of square kilometers of mangroves.

Serge follows his thin ribbon of asphalt in this vastness, and is not very reassured to hear in these dense thickets bathed in swamps, unusual noises. He also crossed his path, a crocodile crushed by a car on the side of the road (see video), if we are to hedgehogs, so here are small crocodiles who complete crushed here. This is certainly not a road on which we would want to run at night.

This morning, after two supplies for the runner, I go back to Miami to finish some shopping and make the exchange, the banks are closed on weekends. But the catch, only the customers of these banks can make changes. So I landed in a huge mall in the US (or oversized) where throngs tourists to the shop and enjoy cinema and other entertainments. Currency exchange exists there. Then I’m leaving in hurry because I left Serge 2:30 but no worried Laure because is going well, he drank a liter of water and eating bar. It’s time to feed my man of noodle soup.

If the thermometer showed 19 ° C at 7:15 am, at 1:00 p.m., it reads 38 ° C in the sun, temperature felt on the road by Serge not under cover, this US41 is not at all shady. He keeps a bottle of water he drinks 1/2 liter each 5 km and 5 km. Around 3:30 p.m., he said that the stomach does not feel well, so he’ll drink less and doesn’t want to eat anymore. Let the body recover because this climate is a  radical change. You will probably understand that I am alone in the vehicle to support Serge all day long until Atlanta (Georgia) and St. Louis (Missouri) where more crew arrive.

Route of Tueday, March 8th: Etape 38

D36 Miami Beach Tamiami US41

D36 Miami Beach Tamiami US41

Miami Beach, starting point of this particular stage: Serge starts to reach Anchorage a few thousand kilometers away, for a small stage of little bit more than 43km. We will not spend lot of time into this tourist spot and will not have taken the time to dip a toe in the water. We will visit the malls, try to update all the communication and especially undo and redo our luggage and prepare the vehicle for departure tomorrow, which is to fill plastic boxes by theme: breakfast, food, meal evening, kitchen … we must also look at the route even if on the next two days, there will be only one change in direction, we leave without major step details except one direction.
Serge seems to accommodate 28 ° C under which he has completed its step. a particular stage also, bacause he has been alone from km 15 to the end of its route, stopping at service stations to buy water and organizing its ravito in a few shops on the US 41 road. It had a surprise visit in the person of Simon Brégardis and family, Thomas’ brother, who has already accompanied us on many trips, I want to say hello on the side of Rennes and Lorient where live “The Family Brégardis”!
Only problem, I could not pick up on US 41 at the end of his stage, because the road was closed at the intersection with the 997 and fiercely barred by two policemen. Fortunately, Serge is customary to answer the phone he carries (he never had to phone him but for this trip I didn’t give him choice) and he has replied. Once its recorded point and tag off, he had to return to these steps to meet me at the crossing point 3,5 km back – Km not included in the mileage of the day of course.
A hazard on the road and it will probably not the only one!

Route for Monday March 7th: Etape 36

D35: Day off Run

D35: Day off Run

Miami here we come!

Nicolas, Serge’s eldest son, who lives in Chicago came to help us in our preparations for departure on this new continent. In the program:

  • Grocery shopper for ravitos and our meals, plus some camping utensils
  • US phones
  • Sleeve T-Shirts sun UV (not easy to find)

The morning passed quickly. After our lunch, go head to the Coin Laundry  before going back to our apartment to pack, store, prepare the start tomorrow because Serge is in hurry to run and a step of a small forty kilometers is planned for tomorrow, allowing the runner to pass through Miami in the quiet of a Sunday morning with not too much traffic. We also took the time to look at the way of the course to Saint Louis (Missouri) which remains to be refined. On the road that leads to St. Louis, we will meet Nashville in Tennessee The little point tracker gives you an appointment tomorrow at 13:30 / 14:00 French time because we have 6 hours difference with France.

Way for March 6th: stage 36

D34: Friday March 4th // Miami – New continent

D34: Friday March 4th // Miami – New continent

A very long way to arrive in Miami specially when the control system at the airport, has just broken down and you must stay 2H30, standing up and waiting.

Serge seems unhappy and hopes to run soon, why not tomorrow even if he is supposed to do shopping, to go to the laundry….