“We must let go of the life we planned, as to accept the one that is waitng for us.” Joseph Campbell
I was anticipating the Finger Lakes Bicycle Tour with glee for some time. However, even best made plans do not come to fruition, and nature often changes our course. My plan was to begin to head up to the Finger Lakes from Long Island on Saturday June 25th, then arrive to meet up with all on Sunday. On Wednesday I was diagnosed with a partial paralysis (should be temporary) of the right side of my face. I made a very difficult decision to attend the tour which I had paid for in advance, and see what I was capable of – which, in all honesty was very little. The first day I rode to Seneca Falls, 13.9 miles, and realized I had to listen to my body (which was screaming it needed to rest and be babied). Holding my self in a biker stance, supporting my head, neck and shoulders proved to be too much for me, as did the side effects of the prednisone I was taking. So readers, I can tell you a lot about the beauty of New York State’s Finger Lakes Region, but it is from someone who barely rode. http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/bells-palsy/DS00168/DSECTION=symptoms
We stayed at Belhurst Castle, which was originally the site of a Seneca Indian village and home to the Council of the Six Nations of the Iroquois. The accommodations were lovely, as you can see.
Map meeting were held each day either at dinner or breakfast. Cue sheets were reviewed with Jen and Laurie the tour leaders, as well as a discussion of the riding conditions (elevation, weather, etc.).
Sunday’s 26.65 or so mile loop ride was to the town of Seneca Falls, which is believed to be the setting for the fictional Bedford Falls, home of George Bailey in “It’s a Wonderful Life”. Mr. Capra is said to have been inspired by the town when he visited it in 1945. Street signs are labeled with names from the movie, and holiday lights were left bundled up high on the steel bridge’s frame, as evidence of a “Bedford Falls” celebration! http://www.therealbedfordfalls.com/therealbedfordfalls.php
One of the benefits of walking or riding a bicycle is you see and notice so many more things, than you would if you were in a car – such as the street signs (Angel Way, Clarence, and George Baily), and even a sign that proclaimed Waterloo (a town we cycled through) as the “Official Birthplace of Memorial Day”. Also Seneca Falls is home to the Women’s History Museum which was worth stopping into. http://www.nps.gov/wori/index.htm