When my alarm woke me at 7:30 AM this morning, I didn't want to get up, but being a somewhat dedicated cyclist, I got out of bed and looked out the window. Low dark clouds. Ah well, I got cleaned up and dressed and headed over to McDonalds for breakfast. Light rain was falling. I had breakfast, went back to my room and worked on editing (correcting spelling and typos)in my older reports. Then I got online, uploaded the revised earlier reports and sent (mailbombed?) the full set to people who I'd met along the way who had requested them. I bet they didn't expect 16 reports totaling over 150 KB! By the way, 7 of them are over 10K and some of them seem to have been filtered by Steve C's mailing list software. That means that they haven't shown up in the mailing, but should be on the web site. If you haven't seen all 16, and want to, send me a request and I'll send them to you. These versions are better than the ones I send to the list in that they have fewer typos and spelling errors.
The rain continued for several hours so I worked on the reports till after 10 AM and left the motel about 11 AM. The shoulders were still wet, but the main parts of the roads were dry and I didn't have any problems with the weather while I rode. It was cool (60s) and overcast all day. Winds were light, mostly from the east. A good, if somewhat dreary, day for riding.
I had more than five miles to go just to get into Watertown. Traffic was moderate and the shoulders were usually good. When I did get into town, I made an important discovery: I hadn't had a real bagel for a long time! I stopped at The Bagel Factory for lunch! It was good (A vegie bagel sandwich, a bagel with cream cheese, and a plain bagel) and I took three bagel with me for later.
Riding through Watertown was slow and not a lot of fun. Things were better once I was out of town heading south on 11. I stopped near Mannsville after some construction - they seem to be replacing a lot of bridges, one of which was on 11 - to eat a bagel. Then I stopped in Pulaski (there is also a Pulaski VA on Rt 11) for a second lunch. Riding was good, although there were sections where 11 didn't have a rideable shoulder. Traffic was light and polite in those sections. Where traffic was heavier, shoulders were good.
Coming into Syracuse, really into Cicero and North Syracuse, was a bit hectic and, as usual, thing were difficult at the I-481 interchange. In my focus on successfully getting through that (having to be in a middle lane in moderate to heavy traffic that is coming on/ coming off and interstate is not good). I caught my fender with my foot and messed up a section that I had glued together for this trip. I stopped, after the intersection, to remove the messed up piece. I reglued it tonight in motel room and, if it isn't stressed too much tomorrow, it should be OK. The weather forecast makes it seem likely that I'll be riding in the rain again pretty soon.
I decided to ride through Syracuse this evening (it was 5:15 PM when I entered the city proper) and to look for a place to eat and a place to stay south of town. 11 goes through the middle of town, which is slow because there are lots of stoplights, and through some fairly rough neighborhoods. I was glad it was Monday night and not too late.
Coming out of Syracuse going south on 11, I found few places to eat or to stay. I ate at another McDonalds and am staying at the Al-Bell Motel. It cost $35 (cash) for a room that is bigger than the one I had last night, but not nearly as nice. It doesn't have a phone or air conditioning and it is a bit seedy. I could have continued on down 11 and probably done better (but not cheaper), but I was ready to stop.
My room does have the weather channel (on a cable box sitting on an old TV) which the Microtel did not have. It also has a fairly comfortable, if squeaky, bed and I expect I'll get a good night's sleep. Still, for $6 (including taxes) more, the difference between the two motels is great. There are a lot of motels like this one along 11, but many of them have gone out of business.