Date: June 5th, 2019
Miles Traveled: 60
Weather: Overcast with minor headwinds.
Physical Status: Tired
TL;DR: Rode through miles upon miles of Ontario farmland, saw dozens of wind turbines, and somehow broke my camera. 😦
After having a delightful breakfast with Melissa and her parents, I said my goodbyes and rode South towards Lake Erie.
Today was a simple day. I would be riding to Port Ryerse (pronounced Ryer-see), a small coastal town on the lake, along nothing but straight, low-traffic highways. After turning West, here’s how the first couple hours of the ride went:
Okay fine, it is the same picture.
I rode… and rode… and rode… and it was great.
I passed by hundreds, if not thousands of acres of Ontario farmland and, despite there being a slight headwind, I was content.
Red-winged black birds chirped at me from the power lines, the engine of a tractor could be heard in the distance, and a car or two passed by maybe every five minutes or so. The weather was cool and overcast and the grasses swayed slowly in the wind. Everything was just so… peaceful.
After continuing on the same road for a couple miles, I began to see enormous, rotating structures appear through the fog:
I passed by dozens of wind turbines dotting the landscape around me, all rotating silently at a slow, steady pace. They towered over the landscape, moving their brilliantly white blades as if to remind the land’s inhabitants of the passage of time.
After a couple more miles of riding through this quiet landscape, I stopped in Dunnesville, Ontario to grab some trail mix and bananas from the local grocery store.
There, I met a fellow bicycle tourist riding the opposite direction who was elated to see another loaded bike parked outside. During our brief chat, I found out the dude got his PhD in computer science studying (4D?) human-computer interaction and now does work related to group theory.
He tried explaining the concept to me, but honestly, a lot of it was over my head. Nonetheless, it was still interesting to meet and talk to such a peculiar individual.
After riding 60 miles from Welland, Ontario, and passing by many more farms and wind turbines, I arrived in Port Ryerse, Ontario and met my host for the night, Jamie, and his son, Lee. Jamie was a retired farmer turned oil refinery manager and falconer (Yes, you read that right. Falconer.) who talked in short sentences and never seemed to look you straight in the eye for more than a brief period.
His son, Lee, was the complete opposite. Lee was a talkative, openly gay man in his late 20s who was studying to become a nurse. The contrast was almost comical.
Though I didn’t have any extended conversations with Jamie, Lee and I shared a very interesting conversation over dinner while Jamie did work in his backyard. We discussed a range of topics, including Canada’s universal health care system, his experience as a gay individual in Catholic school, and sex/LGBTQIA+ education in schools.
Did I mention I met this dude like an hour before?
I think Lee was honestly relieved to talk to someone with similar views on LGBTQIA+ rights, especially after I mentioned I was a resident assistant in college (and didn’t really have a solid understanding of differing types of sexuality until then, which, in hindsight, is surprising). Unfortunately, it seemed as though his parents and the general surrounding community did not necessarily hold the same kind of views.
Anyways, Lee was a pretty cool dude and Jamie, although not as talkative, was a great host.
Tomorrow, I’ll be riding 60-ish miles to Port Stanley, where I’ll be staying with another Warmshowers host right along the coast of Lake Erie.
Until next time!