Day 49: Please stand by during technical difficulties..

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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.

RonaNPat in Marianna
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

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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.

Rona

SHE DID IT!!!!

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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

Day 46: Takin’ it easy before the home stretch

Monday, rest day in Dauphin Island, Alabama:
What a nice feeling to wake up whenever you want, no rush to eat, no dragging duffle bags, no dragging bikes outside, no checking tires, no making snacks, no trying to decide what to wear based on weather predictions, no reviewing cue sheets for directions hoping to not get lost, no stress of traffic–just our day at a nice Resort to do whatever!!! Thank you!!
Tomorrow we bike the 2.5 miles to a ferry we take to Florida and ride 57.5 miles to Pensacola.  9 more riding days and one more rest day before St Augustine.
I will continue to bring awareness to Alzheimer’s, but a day off sure was nice!!!
Thank you for your amazing support–I will need it for the home stretch!!!!

Day 45: Living it up, Gulf Coast style!

April 20 Sunday

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Got an early start to a short ride 40 miles to Dauphin Island, Alabama to enjoy our day and rest day tomorrow at Dauphin Island Beach Club a timeshare Resort!!  We have 5 in our condo with a view of the Gulf on a sunny 75 degree day!!  We biked across a long bridge to the island, and when we leave on Tuesday, we will take a ferry to Florida on route to Pensacola!

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I had my peanut butter sandwich on the balcony and took a walk with Jeannie to a small market for some food for tomorrow (I found a subway so I am set for lunch for tomorrow). I really don’t like going out to eat, especially with the condo balcony view.   So, I am checking out at the register (with my bag of pretzels) at this tiny market and a woman behind me asked if we were biking? I told her about our trip and SHE asked if I was doing it for a charity. I told her my ride was for Alzheimer’s and I immediately saw her eyes tear up.  She told me her father-in-law died last year of Alzheimer’s and he was like a father to her.  Her name is Kimberly from Baton Rouge, visiting Dauphin Island for a little vacation. What a kind and special lady for the love she had for her father-in-law and how devastating Alzheimer’s was in her life, too!!!  My journey continues and people continue to find me who are touched by this horrible disease. I am grateful when I meet strangers touched by Alzheimer’s and blessed that they touch my life.

Know that each of you is a driving force in my journey and together we can make a difference!
With appreciation and love,
Rona

Day 44: Passing through the Magnolia State

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Today started with a beautiful blue sky and 55 degrees–perfect temperature to start our 68 mile ride to Pascagoula, MS, our last stop before Alabama.  About half our ride was quiet and pretty flat, and then the heavy traffic came. Thankfully, people were very nice and passed with care.

photo 4 photo 3The accents here are *real* southern and sometimes hard to understand.  A few of us went to Waffle House next to our Super 8 when we arrived today.  Makes me think of home!!

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Our day tomorrow is only 41 miles into Dauphin Island, our only stop in Alabama. It’s a rest day on a beach in condos–such a far cry from our Super 8 tonight.  Short or long miles, I take each day seriously as there are always issues of safety, and I have to stay sharp.  Fundraising to date $8565 to my goal of $10,000
12 more days ……..
With respect and appreciation