We are enjoying a resurgence of summer weather on this trip. But it's clear we've moved into the fall season. With clear skies, the temperatures have been dropping into the low 30s at night. By morning, a thick fog forms in the river valley obscuring everything. It gives us good reason for delaying our morning start until the fog burns off and the temperature warms up a bit. Even so, I find it chilly enough when we set out to layer up against the cold. I then spend the morning shedding my layers.
By mid-day we've been enjoying warm sunny days, bordering on hot. Cycling feels like a dream, rolling through the countryside with the nascent fall colors reflected in the river. It's interesting to feel the power of the sun. Under the full strength of the sun's rays, the air is warm as it flows around us. As soon as we pass into the shadows, the temperature drops significantly. Even small shady spots have a cooling effect. I don't ever recall feeling such dramatic changes before.
The northern reaches of New Hampshire are sparsely populated. We have cycled for hours without passing through any towns. Even those on the map seem to be fictitious. We must have blinked when we went through them. Missing the diversion of little population centers, I turned my focus to the little details instead. It became easy to find interest and beauty in the simple things around us.
Nothing says summer like ice cream, and we found a 50's style ice cream parlor called At the Hop in Bath, NH. It was filled with Rock 'n Roll memorabilia and more 45's on the ceiling than you can imagine. The ice cream cones were mighty tasty as we sat on the porch of America's oldest General Store next door, which dates back to the 1790s.
The beautiful weather also brought back our thirst for cold hard cider. And what better place to enjoy it and a picnic dinner than the pretty grounds of our lodge motel for the night? It was oh so much better than a restaurant for a change.
Tomorrow is the first day of fall on the calendar. Looking at the weather forecasts, the hot sunny weather may be slipping away. But we've had a great streak for summer's final hurrah.