Today’s distance / ???????: 37 miles / 59.6km
Average speed / ????: 8.0mph / 12.9km/h
Time on skateboard / ????: 4h 36m
Total skateboarding distance to date / ????????????: 1986mi (plus 266mi) / 3197km (plus 430km)
Ascent / ??: n/a
Descent / ??: n/a
End-of-day GPS coordinates: N18.104.22.168, W091.33.53.9
I didn’t get away from Baton Rouge until almost 1pm today. I left Couchsurfing.com hosts Christina and Raphael’s place at 9:30am, and then spent an hour or so re-cleaning my bearings on the skateboard. I had tried cleaning them out last night with water, since they were full of water anyway from the deluge, but there was still grit in them. I stopped by a local hardware store, bought some electrical cleaner, and went to work in their workshop. I find that electrical cleaner is the best stuff for cleaning bearings, as it dries really quickly, leaves no residue, and is highly pressurised. It blasts the grime out of the bearings.
Skating through Baton Rouge, I went past the WAFB Channel 9 News station. What the heck, I thought, and rung the buzzer on the gate. A station reporter wandered out, and I explained what I was doing. Next thing I know, I am being interviewed in the studio live on the 12 o’clock news.
After the interview, it was well and truely time to get out of Baton Rouge. Enter, the Mississippi River. Big dirty old river. Wonderful.
Getting over the big dirty river was not a very nice experience. I went over the US190 bridge. No shoulder, two lanes, lots of traffic.
I followed US190 for a few miles, but I soon got tired of the rough shoulder and noisy traffic. I took a much less traveled road (LA415 and LA620) that took me off the beaten track and through flat wet farm land for a while.
A country store wouldn’t hear anything of it when I tried to buy some sports drink, and even made a sandwich for me for the road.
When I got back onto US190, everything had changed. I was now on a new four lane highway with beautiful wide smooth shoulders. And despite the ever-present small stones and grit (as is typical here in Louisiana), I enjoyed this short reprieve from the terrible roads of Louisiana.