When I logged into my account, I was stunned: to this point, the blog has 239 hits today! And the day is not over yet! This topped the record back in 2011 when I reported during the Africa trip. Thanks for your interest!
I received a lot of good wishes from many friends, but also from people I don’t know…be it via the blog, in the bike parking from the many spectator, from other riders, from rally staff, or from people on the street who wave at me to stop!
I went to the Walmart today and bought some food and water. I couldn’t get a pre-paid phone card there, this was already tricky in Canada. So I will reply that the data roaming will work. I had planned so many things around my electronic farkles, but as often, I might not really use them, including the radar detector. I’ll just stick to the speed limits and that’s it.
I also bought me a E-Z Pass, a transponder for the tollways system in the Eastern States and activated it. I filled up the tanks and everything should be prepared now. I followed the advice of Jeff Earls during the rookie meeting yesterday and I will leave half of the luggage back here. The stuff is already in the panniers, and the bag including the spare tyre that I will leave here are also prepared. Maps are unfolded on the bed and the electronic devices are prepared for the routing this evening/night. At 4 p.m., there will be the rider meeting with the banquet. The riders will be presented one by one and the layout of the rally will be explained. Then the rallybooks will be handed out and the riders disappear in their rooms to do the planning of their routes for the next 4 days (leg 1). Tomorrow morning we have to be in the park at 8 a.m. and will start at 10 a.m. Leg 1 ends on Thursday, July 4th on 8 p.m., right here in Pittsburgh. There will be a bank holiday in Canada (1st) and in the USA (4th), heavy traffic is expected and the weather forecast for the Northwest predicts rain, rain, rain. I plan to take it easy and to ride some 3000 mls, the top riders will surely do some 5000 mls.
I took some pictures in the car park this afternoon: