Day 15: Ottawa, ON to Cobden, ON

Frank (last night’s chocolate ice cream tub guy) cycled with me today.

We started a bit late because I had to go to the bicycle shop to have my tire changed to a Kevlar one. The shop owner, who is a good friend of Frank, gave me a wonderful deal. There was a huge difference in the way my bicycle adapted to potholes after that — I just sailed along! I even hit a rock and heard a large BAM! — I thought it my tire had exploded, it was actually a large piece of stone that had broken into pieces after my tire rolled over it. The tires were that good!

To add to that, there were no winds against us. It all started beautifully indeed, and Frank and I cycled together on the Quebec side until we reached the bridge linking Quebec and Ontario. Thanks for cycling along, bud!

I finally reached highway 17, and realized how much much easier it would be to cycle in Ontario, with its smooth roads and polished highway. Quebec, I will miss your beautiful scenery and wonderful people, but the potholes will remain but a memory. Ontario, here I come!

Cycling with Frank

Cycling with Frank

At Portage-du-Fort

At Portage-du-Fort

The bridge linking Quebec and Ontario

The bridge linking Quebec and Ontario

I cycled along, and finally reached Cobden. It is a quaint little village tucked along highway 17. It really is hidden — literally, to the point that Google Maps doesn’t even show the river that runs along it. I met up with my girlfriend, Frances, over there, and spent the evening on their municipal campground, nestled right beside highway 17. That’s right, we camped right next to the Trans-Canada Highway. We were both new to making campfires, so it took us two and a half hours to make a simple spaghetti dish. The pasta fell on the grass, after us having tried to cook it for two hours… but both our stomachs managed. It was Frances’ first time to camp, and I am happy to share the experience with her.

Guess who's camping for the first time!

Guess who’s camping for the first time!

Three provinces down, five to go! It truly amazes me how there is a vast difference between the scenery between areas, but I’m starting to realize more and more that Canada really is a country of benevolent people who are willing to go beyond their means simply to be able to help, especially in smaller towns. I don’t think I would have been able to keep up with my schedule and pursue my mission without the kindness of my countrymen. Thanks for the solidarity, Canada!