Cycling The Globe

A Cycle Touring Expedition Around The World

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Day 1684 – 1689: 12 States in 10 Days…

Posted by Thomas Andersen Posted on May - 27 - 2015

The Dayton Hamvention might have ended, but my US adventure certainly had not. Paul had been putting together a road trip involving a lot of driving, visiting radio friends, watching a baseball game, a music tour of the South, and much more… We were supposed to drive together from Ohio to North Carolina to visit Will AA4NC. Now, it turns out that Will had been flying his airplane to Dayton, and I was invited to come along for the return trip. Great fun!

In North Carolina we drove to Will’s house, picked up his girlfriend Liana, and headed straight to a concert. Music is big down here in the South! Will and Liana even have a band together – I hope to get a chance to hear them once I return to the US by bike. In the evening Paul joined after a long 8 hour drive from Dayton, and Nate, a friend I have been in contact with for 15 years but never met, also showed up. What a beginning to our road trip!

The next morning we were heading into the mountains of North Carolina. Everybody talks about the Grand Canyon and the other national parks out west. I had no idea that this part of the US has nature like this.

We even made a side trip and drove up to the summit of Mount Mitchell, at 6578 feet the highest mountain in Eastern US.

In Georgia we met W6IZT. Gregg has a beautiful house up in the mountains, the food was great, and the red wine plentiful. Good times indeed.

I have never seen a baseball game in my life, so Paul being a sports fan thought it was about time to fix that. We were headed for Turner Field in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. After a couple of hours of watching the game I understood at least a part of the rules. I don’t think it matters much though – going to a baseball game seemed to be just as much about enjoying a hot dog and a beer with friends as watching the game. And that we did, having a good time with friends – thanks Jeff, Greg, and John for showing up. Great to see you guys!

Our trip continued into a part of the US that had always wanted to visit. Alabama, Mississippi, and not at least Memphis, the home of American music. We stopped to eat at some very local places and enjoyed the southern atmosphere in the places we were passing. By the way, it is not always easy to understand the people down here!

In Memphis we met up with Esteban W4DTA who turned out to be the perfect tour guide – taking us to the gates of Graceland before heading right into Beale Street.

In one of the bars Paul and Esteban spotted a piano and said “Tom, you need to play some blues here”. I wasn’t convinced at first, but this is America and everything is possible. Also, how often do you get the chance to play piano in Beale Street, Memphis!?

Thanks to the wonderful Barbara Blue for the improvised blues. This was something I will not forget.

I could have spent weeks in Memphis, but I had a plane to catch and it was time to head up north towards Chicago again – hitting a few new states on the way. I even got to dip my feet in the Mississippi river.

We spent our last night with Craig K9CT who owns a very impressive contest station 3 hours from Chicago. What can I say, everything is big in the US.

And so our road trip was coming to an end. What an absolutely amazing 10 days it had been. Thanks a million to Paul for everything, and thanks as well to all the people who helped making it possible. I owe you all a big beer.

As I sat in the airport and waited for my flight back to Costa Rica I almost couldn’t believe everything that had happened over the last 10 days – really too much to put into a single blog post, but I tried. The US is certainly a place with a lot of positive energy, and a place where everything is possible if you give it a go. Now I can’t wait to come back and ride through on my bike!

But first I need 3 days of sleep 🙂

Categories: USA
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6 Responses so far.

  1. Wow. What a blast! I’ve not visited any of those states, really. Only passed through them (which doesn’t really count). 🙂

  2. Randy K5ZD says:

    Congrats to Paul (and everyone else) for sharing the amazing diversity of tha USA. As always thanks to you for sharing your experience in words and pictures!

  3. Kenneth OZ1IKY says:

    Don’t let it go to Your head Thomas! When/If You get back – the antennas here in OZ are significant smaller then the ones on the picture

    Catch You later!

    Kenneth OZ1IKY

  4. Hi Stephen! Oh yes, absolutely amazing time in the States. Now I can’t wait to get back there with my bike 🙂

  5. Hi Randy! Oh yes, what a trip to the US! Amazing experience. Glad we got a chance to meet at Crowne Plaza even though it was just for a short chat. Now I can’t wait to get back to the US with the bike. Greetings from YN! Thomas

  6. Kenneth, the antennas might be smaller, but we have more bicycles on the road in Denmark… 🙂 73 de YN/OZ1AA