An artsy ride from Raleigh to Durham

4/14/22

Today I put in some more miles in the saddle. Very tame by bicycle-touring standards, but more than I’ve been used to lately, at about 30 miles.

I said goodbye to my awesome Raleigh host Cody this morning, and headed northwest, riding past a pretty church downtown before getting to yet another beautiful trail to take me partway to Durham. Most of the ride today took place on regular roads—some of which had minimal bike infrastructure—but most of them were pretty. And I did get to experience a couple of the greenway trails.

One of these trails was filled with art by local artists, which was unexpected and really cool. The art included everything from markings on the bike path itself, to paintings nestled in the trees, to several large sculptures in open fields.

Once I arrived in Durham, I said hello to my new awesome Warmshowers host, Chris, who actually used to be actively involved in the inner workings of the Warmshowers organization. Like so many of my hosts, he was very welcoming and amiable, despite having just arrived back in town about a week ago after four months abroad, and also preparing to leave town tomorrow for a long-weekend trip to the beach with some friends.

After we said a brief hello, I headed back out again into downtown Durham, to meet up with three fellow Marillion fans for dinner. They treated me to a wonderful meal at a beautiful Indian restaurant, the Viceroy, while we talked about music, travel, and concerts. Two of these folks were on their way to a Steve Hackett show right after the dinner! Sadly the concert was a bit outside my budget, so I wasn’t able to join them, but I have had the privilege of seeing Mr. Hackett perform early Genesis material twice before, so I wasn’t too disappointed.

After dinner, I lingered in downtown Durham a bit, enjoying the public art and a few local parks. Then I met up with Chris at his friends’ place nearby; they were just welcoming a new puppy (sorry for the lack of pics!) so we hung out in their backyard sipping cocktails, talking bicycling and travel, and enjoying the puppy and his older “brother,” the existing dog of the household.

I’m happy to be here. Tomorrow, after taking care of a few administrative tasks, I’m looking forward to exploring more of the Durham area.

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