Monday, February 20, 2012

Day Two: Tehachapi to Edwards Air Force Base February 20, 2012

Wesley Leon-Barrientos (far left) and Jeremy Staat (far right) with the Edwards Air Force Base Fire Department, February 20, 2012.

Day Two started under gray skies but despite the early morning gloom, there was good news—after a quick breakfast at the Apple Shed (and if you ever find yourself in Tehachapi, you simply must stop there and have a meal or partake of the homemade baked goods or the bakery’s specialty fudge), Tehachapi Mayor Ed Grimes announced that $10,000 was raised for the Jeremy Staat Foundation as part of opening day’s citywide benefit events. He then presented the Keys to the City to Jeremy, Wesley and Dale, along with a special “Tehachapi” city pin. Around two hundred people were out on a gray morning to see the riders off.

It is surprising just how cold the high desert can be. More than one Tehachapi resident remarked that had the circus come through a week earlier, it would have encountered spring-like weather instead of the brisk 40 degrees from the day before. But the cold weather did not deter the five cyclists (two civilians elected to ride with Jeremy, Wesley and Dale) from donning their cycling gear and heading east on Highway 58 toward the first stop in the town of Mojave and a drive-through the former military base. With a quick snack and replenishing of beverages, the caravan headed toward Edwards Air Force Base and the final destination of the day and a docket of activities.

Because Edwards Air Force Base is an active military base, taking photographs is highly restricted. A one-day stopover is planned, with rest and recuperation for the cyclists, setting up our radios, impromptu visits to active-duty military who work and reside on base, and a day to catch up and send out media alerts! We are housed in a very cute 3-bedroom house on base with a fully-equipped kitchen, and I’m planning on making spaghetti & meat sauce for dinner tomorrow if Jeremy lets me get groceries—why not have home cooking while we can? A nice meal of pasta before Wednesday’s 78.1 mile ride will fit the bill perfectly for the riders and road crew!


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