On recommendation from the park's front desk, I ride on to Chittenango for breakfast at a sweet local diner -- the kind where the waitress calls everyone "Honey". Of course eyes are on me as the crazy guy when I walk in after I pull my rig and park it in the front lot. I sit at the counter with some old guys on one end and two police men in the other far end. It's inevitable they would ask what I'm up to so I tell them while waiting for my order. "Here, honey, yer gonna need this for today" as she set down my plate of eggs, sausage, hash browns and marble rye toast.
So one man asks why I'm doing this, expecting me to say I was doing it for a cause or something. "I just wanted to see if it can be done" seems like an odd answer to him. It got me thinking about it, though, after I finished my breakfast and pedalled away. For the first ten years of my schooling I went to a rather innovative private school that let me go on my own learning pace, and I never saw grades or marks to compare myself with my classmates. Instead, our report cards just had colour-coded check marks opposite statements such as "Shows interest in the world around him/her". I guess from an early age I was programmed to find personal growth in play and exploration and it stuck. Sometimes there is no answer, but you find meaning in the search.
|I want my own pictogram|
|Although the canal was partially filled in, Canastota has a few of the canal side buildings still intact.|
|Shirley at the Canastota Canal Museum|
|The trail sometimes dwindles to singletrack, making towing laborious, but still more palatable than the canal water.|
Near Rome, the old canal meets the new one and I try to find a place to put in but it is fenced off. After wasting a bit of time on a bit of a detour, I find a place in Rome but I change my mind as it is getting a bit late, so I keep on towing down the highway. I stop at a diner before searching for a place to camp.
|A bathtub in which you can wash away your sins|