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David Freeze: Sore body and feet make for a three donut day

Editor’s note: Salisbury native David Freeze is running across the state from Murphy to Manteo. The Post is chronicling each day of his journey. Contact him at david.freeze@ctc.net

My goal today was Hayesville while still on N.C. 64 from Murphy. I slept until 6 a.m., something that I almost never do and got up feeling refreshed. It was 26 degrees at that time but expected to warm quickly. I put on all the layers I had to start and felt warm enough going out the door. What I found right away was the sorest quadriceps that I have had in years. The Sunset Motel is a couple of miles from a Walmart and I wanted to visit before leaving town. It sure is a lot harder to get around on your feet with a baby jogger than it is to ride a bike. It seems to take forever, especially with the rumble strips and watching for traffic.

Finally after the Walmart visit to pick up a cyclometer (or maybe jog-ometer in this case) battery and a small radio, I headed back to N.C. 64 to take care of business. I decided through the long day yesterday that I couldn’t come up with enough things to amuse myself, so I wanted a small radio that I could listen to on the road. I got one too and it works perfectly. The jog-ometer battery is to see if I can get another non-functioning distance measuring device to work correctly. I will work on that tonight after submitting today’s story.

A brilliant and beautiful day developed quickly this morning as I went down the road singing along with the hymns on the radio. That was the best $10 I have spent. One guy at a convenience store told me it was much safer to walk on sidewalks than on the edge of the road with rumble strips. I agree, but no sidewalks existed today.

A few miles east of Murphy, I met Mike Kiefer of Hayesville. We had a nice talk and he gave some tips on a couple of places to stay. It is going to be cold again tonight. Mike was riding his bike to Murphy to play tennis with his sister. Turned out that he had done some long-distance cycling and had actually passed through Duluth, Minnesota, too. Mike didn’t want me to use his picture and said, “I have seen it in the post office. I don’t take good pictures.” We talked some more and I asked him again. No picture.

I rode on toward Hayesville and noticed a small monument to the Cherokee and the Valley Towns Mission. Cherokee children were being taught at the mission until the 1836 Trail of Tears. Past that, someone circled me twice in an older airplane and I saw lots of road kill. Not much more of note.

Passing through Hayesville, I stopped at a very nice Ingles grocery store. Since I didn’t have an Ingles card, I took a chance on getting a few things and getting someone to scan their card. A nice guy stepped up to do it while I used the self scanner and was out quickly ahead of the long lines.

With only two places available for lodging, I tried both and got no answer at one. Tried again as I passed the Deerfield Inn that overlooks Lake Chatuge. Nobody answered but I did notice some activity but very few cars. I am staying in the Chatuge Mountain Inn, just across from what I think is the famous mountain.

Tomorrow will be a very long day. I don’t expect my legs to get over the soreness for several more days so it will be a slow walk/run hopefully to Franklin where there appears to be good motel choices. That is important because rain is expected late Monday afternoon and night, carrying into the next morning. Just today on my new radio, I heard the S word mentioned for later this week. One day at a time is all I am going to worry about. Today’s total was just over 21 miles counting the out and back to Walmart and getting lost once. Only about 19 miles in the right direction.

Before I close today, I wanted to remember Ed Dupree who got me started on this journey. So far, I am glad he did. I know he would have loved the beautiful scenery in the southwestern mountains. Most likely, he’s watching my effort and probably offering some encouragement.

Thanks for the excellent pro-style baby jogger from Crystal Karriker. It has already taken a beating on the rumble strips and I am carrying about 35 pounds of stuff so far. Sometimes more depending on the water.

Other sponsors for the event this year include Accelerate Therapy and Performance, owned by Dr. Delaine Fowler. I need her here now to work on these sore legs. Also back again are Gear for Races from Raleigh and director Luis Villareal. Luis supplies nearly all the race shirts in the Rowan County area.

So far, I think the hardest day will be tomorrow. Check back to see if I made it to Franklin ahead of the bad weather on the sore legs. Thanks again for joining me yet another time!

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