That ride I didn't want to do. Did it. Loved it. I didn't make 75 miles (did 67), not because I couldn't but because that's how many miles were in the route I took.
I went east on U.S. 55 to Wardensville, WV. Now, as soon as I crossed the state line into WV, the nice gently-rolling Virginia byway I was on became West-by-Gawd-Virginia, 6,000 miles up in the air. Apparently I was going uphill even when I thought I was going down, because at one point I got off the bike and checked to see if my brakes were stuck against my tires or something. Nope. Everything was fine with the bike. It's just West-by-Gawd-Virginia, of which Garrett County, MD is part, even thought it's in Maryland.
Anyway. Finally I was on a grade that could be perceived as nothing other than pure uphill. Up and up and up I ground, in my granny gear, for the longest time. And up. And up. And up. FINALLY got to the top, where one of those down-bound-truck-warning signs informed me: "9% grade next 4 miles." I wailed, "Oh, no, I'm going to have to go up it on the way home!" That must have been what I just came up. I went down it with my brakes on most of the time. I don't do downhills hell-bent-for-leather unless (a) I know the hill like the back of my hand or (b) I'm wearing leather. (Not that I have any.)
Stopped in Wardensville at a 7-11 to refill my fluids and food. The sign on the bathroom said, "HALT!! Not a public restroom. Management must OK use." So I asked the cashier. Told her, "I've ridden from Winchester [32 miles], and I drank more water than I probably should have, and I really need to go." She said, "Gosh, I'd like to say yes, but I can't let anyone use it right now, they're counting money in there."
Found a laundromat nearby with a very nice bathroom. And then a very nice police officer who told me a MUCH better way to go home. Rolling, a few hills, beautiful scenery, thru 2 WV counties and out onto US Rte. 50, which is the very same road I'm using for my virtual cross-country bike ride, which I haven't updated for quite a while. It was neat to be on Rte. 50 here in VA, which would be so close to the end of my virtual trip, when in fact I'm so close to my training-for-IMFL journey.
Anyway.... I did it, and I'm glad! I'm actually kind of looking forward to the challenge of tomorrow's 20/11 brick. Or 20/13, if I feel really good. Thing is, I tend to set these expectations of myself; if 13 is one of the choices, I'll have to be next-to-dragging to decide on the 11.
Or I could do 12.