Today we biked 78 miles from Brattleboro to Manchester, NH. Ten states and one Canadian province traveled to this point. We run out of states heading east when we dead end into the Atlantic Ocean at Portsmouth tomorrow!

Given that it is just so much fun to be nearly done and to feel as good riding the bike as I do at this point, I may be handing out “epic” badges too leniently, but I think today also deserves to be called “epic.” The route today was at the top of my “favorite” list for the entire ride, and is exactly the sort of route I would like to do over and over if available back on Long Island where I do most of my riding. We climbed 4500 feet today, which is a lot, but the hills were mostly “enjoyable,” i.e. some strenuous climbs, none of which really exceeded 1 miles, followed by a nice descents. But mostly it was rolling up and down through back country roads in scenic New Hampshire. The quiet “authentic” New England villages (Francestown, e.g.) with no tourists were more enjoyable in some ways than the movie set look of a place like Bennington in Vermont, which was busy with tourists yesterday.

Since arriving in New York, every state has full marriage equality (and including Canada, it has been legit since leaving Michigan). Vermont and New Hampshire have full marriage equality since 2009, and Maine is poised to vote it in via referendum this November. Go New England states. It would be expected that since the New Hampshire state motto is “live free or die,” (seat belts in cars and motor cycle helmets are optional for adults) that this state would support the view that government has no place legislating in people’s lives, but nonetheless, Republicans have tried to repeal it several times since then. The vote this spring to rescind was rejected 211-116, which would presumably put the issue to rest forever? One Republican representative who is a supporter of marriage equality, proposed a bill to ban marriage between left-handed people in jest to make a point. It also failed….

Today’s blog is going to be short, as we are having the farewell banquet this evening. I am happy to report that bf Carlos arrived at the hotel this afternoon after driving my car up from NYC to enjoy the banquet and will be there for the finish line tomorrow. He was there in Astoria to start me off, which was awesome. He has supported me throughout the spring as I had daily meltdowns on trip preparations, training and fundraising. Thanks Carlos, it is great to see you (and my car!) in Manchester!

Tenth (and last) state!

Near Mount Monadnock