Day 55: So close, I can TASTE IT!

I am so flipping excited as I checked my donation page–I just went over $12,029 today!!

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Right now as I sit in my Best Western hotel room, I am brought to tears for so many blessings. Going over my goal and the donations still continue (please, don’t stop now!!).  Some friends from home had a basket of some of my favorite snacks sent to my hotel room and it was delivered by chance by Ralph’s Florist (that was my DAD’S name).

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Debbie even sent a picture of some residents at the facility where she works in Williamsburg, thanking me for my efforts. So many amazing words of encouragement, support and prayers that I could never thank you all enough, BUT I WILL TRY!!!!

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Tomorrow, this physical journey will end (God willing) as we ride out from our hotel and wait for each other at a fire station a few miles from the St Augustine  beach. Together we will ride to the beach (police escorted)  for the front tire dipping in the Atlantic to signify the end of our 2 month bike ride across America.  Now you *know* I will tear up again (I won’t be alone).

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So much has happened in the last 2 months and I hope my words have helped you gain a small part of what this experience meant to me. I will be processing this journey for quite some time.  By the grace of God, this has been an experience both physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual, all while bringing awareness and raising donations to end the horrific disease with presently no way to prevent, or cure; Alzheimer’s disease.
Thank you for your patience.  2 months is a long time, but to journal this trip was so important because though I did the pedaling, you were with me every mile I rode. Alzheimer’s needs us all to fight, and to speak out loud because “IF WE DON’T WHO WILL”?
With love and appreciation

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Day 54: Country roads take me home..

photo 1 (12)Tuesday’s 75 mile bike ride is complete and we are safe in High Springs, Florida.  We beat the rain, and it is the typical Florida humidity, just like home.  Good news is, I like hot weather, and it makes the post bike ride shower even more enjoyable.  I got a call from the St.Augustine/Jacksonville area Alzheimer’s Association. They are planning to be there when I roll in Thursday around 11-ish.

Biking through this part of Florida (Panhandle, small farming towns) is very different from the Atlantic coast, Orlando, and larger cities on the Gulf that I have visited.  We passed many cattle farms, crops being planted, and open lands. When you ride country roads, an area feels so different than traveling the interstates.  I have learned our beautiful country is covered with miles and miles of farm lands and open spaces.  Biking has given me such a great opportunity to see America from such a different perspective, and we are not done yet–120 miles to go!!!!

My fundraising is still ongoing and I am at $11,404 with no stopping us yet!!!

Thank you all for your amazing support–can’t wait to be able to thank you in person.

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Day 53: On the downhill slope..

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Today’s ride was straight, flat, good shoulders, not much debris and only 52 miles. Nice ride for getting a good fast ride (I averaged 17 mph) and no chance of getting lost. We are now in Perry, Florida and checked into a Hampton Inn.

I would like to dedicate this blog to all participants past, present and future of our National Signature Event “Walk To End Alzheimer’s”. There are over 650 walk events nationwide and the Walks have raised over 300 million to date. A special thank you to participants of our Southeastern Virginia Chapter Walks. Our Chapter supports 6 Walk To End Alzheimer’s events.
Please join our Chapter at one of our walks: go to to find a walk near you.
My Peninsula Walk To End Alzheimer’s is Saturday, October 18th at Port Warwick in Newport News. For more information and to register, go to (Peninsula).
Teams and individuals are registering (free) now so help us make our walks the most successful ever!  We would love to see you at our Peninsula Kickoff July 15 at The Cove Tavern, 5:30pm, free of charge.
 The End Of Alzheimer’s Starts With Me …..
3 More Days of biking for Alzheimer’s help me raise needed donations I am at $10,894 and riding strong!!!!
With appreciation,

Day 52: What a rest day is–and is *not*

Sunday April 27–our REST DAY in Crestview Florida.

So what is a rest day like for me??????  Well, I will tell you first what A Rest Day is *Not*!!!!!
1. It is *not* setting an alarm for 5:45 am
2. It is *not* laying out your bike clothes the night before (hoping you guess the weather correctly).
3. It is *not* getting up and hoping both of your tires are hard and you did not have a slow flat over night.
4. It is *not* throwing on bike clothes in the dark because your roommate is not an early riser like me and stumbling down for coffee in the lobby (that’s in the nice motels).
5. It is *not* trying to eat the right breakfast to get you started on your ride depending on the distance.
6. It is *not* schlepping down your two bags (that have not gotten lighter over the weeks) to put on the trailer.
7. It is *not* schlepping your bike down the stairs, unless you were the lucky one to get a first floor room.
8. It is *not* checking tires and waiting for your favorite pump to pump them to your favorite pressure. Mine is 100 lbs.
9. It is *not* making a peanut butter sandwich.
10. It is *not* gazing over the snack table wondering what snacks you might need to make it to the end of a long ride.
11. It is *not* worrying you will be able to follow the cue sheet and make a wrong turn.

Waiting for the fog to lift

Waiting for the fog to lift

Do You Get The Idea Of A Rest Day my friends?! Needed and appreciated!!!!!!

So what IS a Rest Day?
For me, a rest day is a day to reflect on this journey.  What have I learned about myself and life?
I take time to think of the people that have touched my life. Why did I meet a stranger on a plane in August as I was heading home from visiting friends in Maine, who had done a cross America bike trip? Why did he inspire me to attempt such a journey?

A rest day is my day to process my appreciation for you and so many things in my life. I can reflect on just how grateful I am for all the donations raised for Alzheimer’s.  I can’t think of a better way to rest than to thank God for my all blessings!!!!!!

Tomorrow we are off to Perry, Florida, a 54 mile ride.
Please continue to pray for our safety as our trip winds down. More miles to go and more journey to embrace.

Till tomorrow

Day 51: One last rest stop

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I have arrived at my Saturday destination and we will be here for a rest day until Monday morning. Oh, we are in Crestview.  I am sure many of you have been here!!!  Our hotel is near nothing but woods so it is very peaceful.  Some of us stopped at a WalMart en route so we would have something for tomorrow’s lunch and snacks. Our cook makes dinners and they are great!!!

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One of the big differences in our rides since we got to Florida is the humidity and warmer temperatures. It makes deciding what to wear in the morning very easy.  Some of my bike buddies from up North think this is hot. I know better because summer is not here yet.

For those of you following my blogs–I guess that is you–thank you, and this long journey is almost over. We will be in Perry, High Springs, Palatka, and finally St. Augustine to finish this journey. The ritual with cross country bike rides is that we dip our back tire in the Pacific and the front tire in the Atlantic.

My ride for Alzheimer has reached $10,894 and hopefully will continue to grow as I get closer to home. Though my goal was reached on my birthday April 23 please help me finish strong.
With only 4 riding days to go, please continue to pray for our safety.  I really want to come home to you ALL.
Miss You
I will be on WNIS 790 with our Tony Macrini MONDAY at 6:30 am
I plan to be home May 2

Day 50: Not done yet!


I had a tearful goodbye to my friend Pat who came to visit me in Marianna.  Then we pedaled out to Quincy, Florida, a moderate 54 mile ride with lots of rolling hills, which keep you on your toes. But even more alarming was the dog that showed up to chase my buddy and me.  Hey!  We are *not* in Louisiana or Mississippi!  Yikes!  You have never seen someone pull out their whistle as fast as I did on the chase. 1 rona – 0 dog!!!!! Moral of the story is, we are not finished with this journey, and I must keep focused !!!

So my last blog was late because I lost all yahoo connections and could not read or send emails for I think the last 24 hours so when I got to Quincy, I called Yahoo and was on hold for 60 minutes only to get a nice young man, Chris, and after 45 minutes, he helped me reconnect with a new password, etc, and here I am!  Another trial, and I won.  Another lesson in patience, and I won!!!!
Since I am writing this in the laundry room, and my clothes are dry, I will say “till tomorrow “!
With appreciation–and a finish in sight!!– thank you.

Day 49: Please stand by during technical difficulties..


Wow, I lost all service yesterday– just finished with Yahoo over 90 min to get it fixed…. YEAY…

Now Thursday’s blog first:

Thursday was a 94 mile ride and our last really long ride, so we got off to an early start at 7:15am.  It was foggy and warm for the first 40 miles so I was happy to have my back blinking light working !!
It was 4 miles to get out of Crestview and then 90 miles on State Route 90 on a good shoulder and a straight shot to Marianna, Florida. No chance of getting lost!!! Nothing too interesting, but green trees and rolling hills. However the best came when I got to the Comfort Inn and my old running buddy Pat drove down 7 Hours from Huntsville, Alabama to visit me and spend the night. Guess what we did ?? Talked for hours since we had not seen each other in 9 years. It was so awesome!  I introduced Pat to my bike buddies, and she got a feel for this adventure first hand.

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It was so nice to see Pat and we even cried when I pedaled out this morning saying, “Let’s not wait 9 years again!!!”
Thank  you to everyone back home for your birthday wishes!!  It was amazing, and your kindness made me very emotional with joy.  I am so blessed!
Thanks to so many wonderful people, I reached my fundraising goal–on my birthday– of $10,000 for Alzheimer’s and we are over $10,700 now! Please continue to share and spread our message, though, as there is no finish line until we find a cure.
Love, Rona

Day 48: A once in a lifetime day..

photo 1 (10)Today, April 23, is a very special birthday for me not just because is was # 60, but because there will never be one like it again.
I have been blessed to bike across America for Alzheimer’s Disease, my new bike buddies shared the happy day with me, I had a great 65 mile ride to Crestview, Florida, I was interviewed by the Huffington Post (checkout my Facebook), we are staying at a nice hotel (Hampton Inn), I got to pick dinner so I picked spaghetti, my wonderful husband Alan sent me a dozen red roses, tomorrow is our last 95 mile ride, my old running buddy Pat is driving down from Huntsville, Alabama tomorrow to visit in Marianne, Florida, I am ever so close to my fundraising goal and I received so many kind birthday wishes.
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Please know how grateful I am and how much I look forward to seeing everyone back in Va.




Day 47: This one’s for you, Mom.

This is the Blog I have ridden across this country to write.
It is special because today is the 3rd anniversary of my Mom’s death to Alzheimer’s disease. My mom had no other illnesses, and I watched her body shut down as her brain shut down.
I watched this wicked disease take everything we all take for granted from my mother– walking, talking, dressing, grooming, going to the bathroom, eating, and the most painful, not knowing her family.  I only wish I could have talked to Mom when she first started getting sick, but we just did not know enough to understand what was really happening.  So she slipped away and then it was too late to say Good-Bye.
Today, I dedicate this blog to you, Mom, but please understand, MOM, you are sharing this dedication with every person living today with Alzheimer’s disease.  Today, I am a different person from your little girl.  I am a woman who will never stop fighting  to bring awareness to this tragic disease.  I will do that to honor YOU for the rest of my life.
Today we rode into Florida, stopping in Pensacola. I did not know it would be so emotional, but I can’t believe this is our last state and only 9 days till St Augustine.  I can only imagine that feeling and I continue to pray for our safety as that day approaches.
My fundraising to date is $9045 to my goal of $10,000
Please help me realize my goal with a donation of any amount !
Online or a check to the Alzheimer’s Association 6350 Center Drive, Suite 102 Norfolk, VA, 23502
With appreciation and respect