TRIP 2016

Update #02 - January 31st
Fayetteville, Georgia
644.48 miles (1,031.17 km) - Year Total
785.98 miles (1,257.57 km) - Mission Trip 47 Total

January 14, 2016 : Americus, GA to Butler, GA : 37.46 miles (59.94 km)
Trip Total: 514.95 miles (823.92 km)
Year Total: 373.45 miles (597.52 km)

I woke up a little after 6 am. There wasn't much of a breakfast provided. I left the motel around 8:30 am. The temperature had gotten down to freezing. There was some frost on the grass and on cars. On the way out of town, I rode passed the headquarters of the Fuller Center but I didn't stop.

The ride North to Butler was kind of slow because there were a lot of hills. Because of the hills, I only got in 19 miles before noon. I stopped alongside the road for a short lunch break. The afternoon ride to Butler went okay.

I got into Butler around 3 pm. I stopped at the First Baptist Church. The ministers were in the office. I was offered the use of a Sunday school classroom for the night.

January 15, 2016 : Butler, GA to Jarrell, GA : 07.77 miles (12.43 km)
Trip Total: 522.72 miles (836.35 km)
Year Total: 381.22 miles (609.95 km)

I was hoping to get a lot of rest but I didn't. The room didn't get dark because there was a lot of light coming through the venetian blinds and through the glass window in the door. Several overhead lights stayed on during the night. I woke up a little after 6 am. There was the sound of rain on the roof. By 8 am, it had cleared some. I was looking at heading out around 8:30 am but it started to rain hard again. It was almost 9:30 am when I headed out.

On the way out of Butler, I got flagged down by a lady in a car. She told me that she had passed me and saw the sign on the back of Alice. Before she left, she slipped me a GH.

The hills weren't as bad as yesterday. About 6 miles out of Butler, it started to rain again. There wasn't any place to get out of the rain and wait it out. I didn't feel like riding 23 more miles in the rain to Thomaston. About a mile more down the highway, I came across the Bethel Congregational Methodist Church. I saw some cars there. The pastor was in. He told me that they had a mission house next to the church and I was given permission to spend the night there. After about an hour, the pastor came back to the mission house with a portable electic heater since the central heating was broken and a bag of groceries. He also offered me the use of the mission house through the weekend and maybe through Monday. The high Monday is supposed to be just 39.

January 19, 2016 : Jarrell, GA to Thomaston, GA : 25.27 miles (40.43 km)
Trip Total: 547.99 miles (876.78 km)
Year Total: 406.49 miles (650.38 km)

I got a little more sleep last night than the night before. I got on the road around 8:30 am. The ride to Thomaston was a little slow because of the hills and the rumble strips.

I got into Thomaston around 11 am. My first stop was at a Dollar General to get some much needed groceries. I then stopped at a BK for some lunch. After lunch, I walked back into the downtown area to the First Baptist Church. I found a place to get out of the wind. I caught the minister as he was coming back from lunch. The minister was pretty friendly. He offered to get me a room at one of the motels on the Northern edge of town through the ministerial association.

January 20, 2016 : Thomaston, GA to Griffin, GA : 29.53 miles (47.25 km)
Trip Total: 577.52 miles (924.03 km)
Year Total: 436.06 miles (697.63 km)

I didn't get as much sleep as I had hoped. The room was in an awkward position under the stairs and right next to the soda and ice machines. Somebody around midnight decided that they wanted to fill up containers with ice. I think that they might not have been guests. It sounded like they filled several containers. This caused the ice machine to make more ice.

I think that I got about four hours of sleep. I woke up around 5 a.m. I tossed and turned for about an hour. There wasn't much of a breakfast. Microwavable pancakes and biscuits. I took things back to my room.

I left the motel around 8:30 a.m. The temperature was in the low 30s. The ride to Griffin was really slow because of the pavement and the rumble strip. I had to stop several times to do some road side repair on Alice. I got through the town of Zebulon around noon. There wasn't a place to stop for lunch.

The ride to Griffin was a little better. I got to the Southern outskirts of Griffin around 1 p.m. There was a pretty bad wreck between a semi and a pickup truck. The smaller truck was flipped over on it's side and pretty messed up. There was a lifeflight helicopter but I think that the driver in the smaller truck was killed because nobody was really rushing. I stopped at a McDs for a late lunch.

From the McDs it was about a four mile ride into the downtown area. There was one church - The First Baptist. There was a sign telling about local social service centers. There was a mention about a shelter. I thought that I would try any way. I talked with the assistant pastor and he was friendly. He told me that the sr pastor was out but should be back in twenty minutes. The senior pastor wasn't that friendly and he told me that there wasn't anything that he could for me.

When I got outside, it was lightly raining. There wasn't anything that I could do but head out. I got back on bus US 19. About three miles out of the downtown area I stopped at another Baptist church. I was able to talk to the secretary but she told me that there wasn't anybody else around. It was too late to try and go on to Jonesboro. About a half mile further down the road was a collection of motels. I stopped at what I thought was the cheapest motel but the listed rate on the sign was bait and switch. It would be too cold to try and camp out so I used some of my emergency money to get a room.

January 21, 2016 : Griffin, GA to West Conyers, GA : 38.67 miles (61.87 km)
Trip Total: 616.19 miles (985.90 km)
Year Total: 474.73 miles (759.57 km)

I didn't get as much sleep as I had hoped. I woke up around 6 a.m. Really frustrated that the laptop is acting up. I don't know what is wrong. I left the motel around 8:30 a.m. The temperature was in the upper 30s.

The ride to JOnesboro was really slow because of the pavement, the hills, and the rumble strip. In Jonesboro, I tried to connect with the ministers at the First United Methodist and First Baptist Churches but I didn't have any luck. There was a funeral going on at the Methodist Church and one was getting ready to start at the Baptist Church. I tried calling the Baptist church where there was supposed to be a prophets chamber but my cell phone didn't want to connect to the network.

It took a while finding GA 138 to Stockbridge and then East on to Conyers. I stopped at a McDs for a late lunch. In Stockbridge, I stopped at four churches but I didn't have any luck. None of the ministers were at the churches. Around 3 pm, I tried connecting with some people at a Baptist church about four miles out of Stockbridge but they didn't come out to meet me.

Around 4 pm, I had to find some woods to camp out in because it started to rain. I was able to get the tent up and everything inside before it started to rain hard. I got within 8 miles from Conyers.

January 24, 2016 : West Conyers, GA to Grayson, GA : 33.84 miles (54.14 km)
Trip Total: 650.03 miles (1,040.05 km)
Year Total: 508.53 miles (813.65 km)

I got a little more sleep than I hoped. The temperature got a little warmer. I was out of the woods before 9 am. About 4 miles down the highway I stopped at a Dollar General to get a few groceries. Any church that I came across were Black churches. On the way through Conyers, I didn't see any more churches around 11 am. I had really wished that I could have stopped at a church but I didn't go through the main part of Conyers before I got on GA 20.

Before heading North on GA 20, I stopped at a gas station for some hot chocolate. The ride to Loganville was slow. About five miles of Loganville I saw some activity at a Presbyterian church. There was some meeting going on. I talked with the lady minister but she wasn't friendly or helpful.

I got into Loganville around 3 pm. The main church was the Methodist. The only activity was a girl scout group but nobody knew the phone number for the minister. I did stop at a small Baptist church. The evening service was supposed to be at 5 pm. Around 4 pm, people showed up to practice. I talked with the minister but he wasn't friendly. I stopped at another Baptist church but it was too big.

I got back on the highway. There was some sidewalk to ride along. Around 5:30 pm., I was on the outskirts of Grayson. I came across some woods. The woods were down a hill and across a creek. I found a place to camp out near a burnt down house.

January 27, 2016 : Grayson, GA to Alpharetta, GA : 35.55 miles (56.88 km)
Trip Total: 685.58 miles (1,096.93 km)
Year Total: 544.08 miles (870.59 km)

I didn't get any sleep last night. Around 9 pm, it started to rain. I thought that the tent was in a good position but I didn't. I actually had the tent on slanted ground and I had one tent leg in a hole. Around 5 a.m, I noticed that I was feeling more and more wet. I found a big puddle and my sleeing bag was getting more and more wet.

Around 7 a.m, I started to pack up. It was really bad having to pack up a wet sleeping bag. I was out of the woods around 8:30 am. There was a sidewalk to ride through Grayson. Coming into Lawrenceville, I stopped at a laundromat to get the wet stuff dried. In downtown Lawrenceville I stopped at a Dollar General to get some more groceries. Across the highway was a McDs. I stopped for some lunch. A guy with a laptop helped me map out a route of 32 miles to the mission center.

The route from downtown Lawrenceville was really tricky because there were a lot of turns. I was able to make it into Alpharetta by 3 pm. I stopped at a Presbyterian church but there was nobody around. A couple of blocks away there was a Missouri Lutheran Church. There was some activity there because of a preschool. I caught the minister in the office. He was friendly towards me.

Because of the preschool, I couldn't stay in the church. The minister offered to help me by getting me a room at a motel in the town about 3 miles away.

Tomorrow, I have less than 20 miles to ride to the mission center. Hopefully, I will find some people there so it wouldn't be a wasted trip.

January 28, 2016 : Alpharetta, GA to Woodstock, GA : 11.79 miles (18.86 km)
Trip Total: 697.37 miles (1,115.79 km)
Year Total: 601.81 miles (962.90 km)

I didn't get much sleep. There was a lot of ambiant noise from the other rooms and the loud noise from the air conditioner/ heater unit. I was happy that my laptop is working except for the problem with the keyboard. It was really late when I went to bed. I almost did an all nighter.

I woke up around 5 am. The first task was to get Alice repacked because I pitched the tent to dry it out. There was a light breakfast provided.

Around 8:30 am, I decided to head out. It wasn't that cold. The ride from the motel to the mission center went okay. I got to the mission center around 11 am. I was hoping for an extended stay but they only provide three day stayovers. My stay will only be for ovenight.

January 29, 2016 : Woodstock, GA to Douglasville, GA : 45.94 miles (73.50 km)
Trip Total: 743.31 miles (1,189.30 km)
Year Total: 244.96 miles (391.30 km)

I wished that I had a better night. I didn't get much sleep. I slept on the sofa instead of on the bed to avoid the light coming through the venetian blinds. I woke up around 6 am.

I wished that I would have learned more about this mission center before I got here. It was a bit of a wasted trip. From what I understood, this center had been set up to give missionaries a place to stay while they were on furlough or before they went out into the mission field but it isn't the case now. Ministers could have also come for a time of respite. This isn't the case now. The mission center is in a residential area and new zoning regulations prevent the center from providing long term housing. The max stay is just three days. They do not have a license to run a guest house. They also ask for fifteen dollars a day donation. There used to be church services but not any more.

I left the mission center around 8 am. I used a trip sheet to get to Woodstock. I did get lost a little bit at the beginning. The trip sheet provided a tricky ride to Hiram.

I got into Hiram a little before 4 pm. I caught the minister in at the Methodist church. He wasn't that helpful. I did have a phone number of a Baptist church that was supposed to have a prophet's chamber but there was nobody at the church when I tried to call. On the way South to Douglasville I rode past the Baptist church but there wasn't anybody around it.

I was able to find some woods to camp out in near the Northern outskirts of Douglasville.

January 30, 2016 : Douglasville, GA to Fayetteville, GA : 38.94 miles (62.30 km)
Trip Total: 640.75 miles (1,025.20 km)
Year Total: 782.25 miles (1,251.60 km)

I had a better night than what I had exected. It didn't get that cold. There was a lot of noise to deal with including some gun fire. I woke around 7 am.

I got out of the woods around 8:30 am. About a half mile down the road, I stopped at a gas station to use the restroom and to get some hot chocolate. Outside of the gas station, I got one of my paperback books to read. About ten minutes into my reading and sipping the hot chocolate, this black guy came up to me and slipped me a GH. Three minutes later another black guy came up to me to give me another GH.

From the gas station it was about a three mile ride into downtown Douglasville. I rode through downtown Douglasville last September. I had plans to ride to Newnan but I decided to stay on GA 2 to Fayetteville. I stopped at a gas station South of I 20 to get out my laptop to check out my mapping software. As I was putting the laptop into it's carrying bag, this older black guy stopped to give me a small GH.

The ride South to Fayetteville was slow because of the hills. A little after noon, I stopped at a Methodist church in Campbellsville because it had a picnic shelter. The church parking lot was busy from other cyclists going on day rides. The afternoon ride to Fayetteville went okay.

I got into downtown Fayetteville a little before 4 pm. For some reason, I thought that today was Friday so I went around to check out a couple of the local churches. I was really surprised when I saw the correct date on my cellphone. There was one think that I could do was to find a place to camp out. I had to travel about four miles to the West before I could find a place to camp out.

January 31, 2016 : Fayetteville, GA to Fayetteville, GA : 03.73 miles (05.97 km)
Trip Total: 644.48 miles (1,031.17 km)
Year Total: 785.98 miles (1,257.57 km)

I had a better night than what I had expected. It didn't get that cold. There was a lot of road noise to deal with but I had two long dreams. I woke around 7 am. I got out of the woods around 9:00 am. It was almost a four mile ride back into downtown Fayetteville.

I was going to go to the First Baptist Church but I decided to go to the First United Methodist Church instead. There wasn't anybody around to direct me to a Sunday school class so I went to the sanctuary and listened to the church orchestra practice. I got to talk with the assistant pastor before the service. The service was okay. After the service, I got to talk with the senior pastor. There was an offer to get me a room at the Holiday Inn across the highway. This was the third Holiday Inn for the year.

The next trip update should be posted sometime between February 14th and February 21st.



Bicyclist in Sunset



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