NEW YORK CITY!

My awesome cousin Julie!

My awesome cousin Julie!

I'm here! And been so busy... I'm currently in my Ace Hotel room (two nights on Ace, btw!) listening to music, trying to rest but it's not happening. My emotions include a mix of excitement, anxiety and exhaustion. I got into NYC via New Jersey. The night in New Jersey was spent in Middletown at Toby and Dan's beautiful home. I arrived after riding from New Hope PA and Toby and Dan have a gorgeous pool I enjoyed after my ride. I didn't get a photo of them since the next day they left for church and didn't come back before I left! But, I enjoyed dinner with Dan (Toby had a shower to attend) and went to bed early, getting another 9 hours of sleep. I cycled to the ferry in the morning, about 7 miles and sat on the New Jersey beach at Highlands and enjoyed the view of the Manhattan skyline. I'm here! The day was beautiful- just perfect weather and I enjoyed the ferry ride past the financial district up into midtown. I also met another ferry passenger, Paul. Great person! We exchanged numbers for a possible NYC hangout later in the week.

I got to Graig and Ginny's after cycling in Manhattan to their place- what a fun, exhilarating ride! Got to catch up with them and Isla, their awesome daughter. The 4 of us walked over to the piers, had drinks and enjoyed the Sunday afternoon catching up. My cousin Julie and her boyfriend Rob met us all for dinner. I stayed with Graig and Ginny and had a massage scheduled for Monday morning (yesterday). My massage was awesome and my legs finally released a bit. I heard from Good Morning America Live (online version on at 9am after the early morning show) that they indeed wanted me as the guest on today's show! So, thank you to cousin Julie for contacting people you know at ABC and pitching my story. Without your emails, I wouldn't have been on the show! I also heard from the Hartford Courant about scheduling a phone interview for today! So, all that relaxation I was supposed to feel after my massage was replaced with... "Oh my goodness... media coverage!" I packed up my stuff at Graig and Ginny's in the financial district and hopped on my bike and rode to midtown to the Ace Hotel. Yes- my friend and colleague Vicki Crawford with the Clinton Foundation pitched my story to Ace and they offered for me to stay for two nights! I arrived at the Ace, checked in to complimentary goodies and an awesome Ace t-shirt in my room. I got ready and walked (because I need the exercise, you know) the 1.8 miles to Randolph Beer, a location that college friends selected to meet up at. Well, I should say Ithaca friends since most of the people that showed up last night I knew from Cornell and people who grew up in Ithaca. There were some surprises as well! Gia and Seth showed up with Forest (their son) and 4 day old (no joke) daughter, Violet. Yup, Gia and Seth took the subway from Brooklyn into Manhattan with their son and again, 4 day old daughter. Not an adoption situation. Gia gave birth 4 days ago. ROCKSTARS! And, Nick showed up, a very good friend from Ithaca whom I hadn't seen in probably 15-16 years! Cassady and Theo, Suzie and Pat and kids, Chris and Jean-Marie- all Ithaca/Cornell people. Adam came, another touring cyclist I met in person for the first time last night, but we've been following each other's trip via Twitter. So, that was super cool. And, my friend/colleague Kenny showed up and Paul- the guy I met on the ferry came too. Super fun night and felt supported and loved and encouraged. Especially from people I haven't seen in years and years. I feel so fortunate.

I woke up early this morning and walked to GMA in Times Square (ABC Studios). Paul came with me and helped me get my gear over there (THANK YOU!). It was also nice to have a 'buddy' with me to experience being in ABC studios, hanging in the green room and somebody after to celebrate with me. Thanks to my new friend Paul! The experience was exhilarating and super fun. The people at ABC were so nice! Link to the show is here.

We walked back to Ace, dropped off my stuff and had a delish breakfast at Breslin, the restaurant here. I napped afterwards and a group of us are about to meet up and play some ping pong in the city (cousins, friends). It's been a whirlwind, but an amazing time here in NYC! Leaving for Long Island tomorrow...

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Ginny, Graig, Isla and I! 

Ginny, Graig, Isla and I! 

Hanging outside Ginny and Graig's place... waiting for them to come down!

Hanging outside Ginny and Graig's place... waiting for them to come down!

My room at the Ace, equipped with vinyl records and a player. Oh- and an acoustic guitar...

My room at the Ace, equipped with vinyl records and a player. Oh- and an acoustic guitar...

Nick, me, Chris and Cassady

Nick, me, Chris and Cassady

Adam- another cross country cyclist! Way to go Adam- congratulations!!

Adam- another cross country cyclist! Way to go Adam- congratulations!!

Gia and Seth! 

Gia and Seth! 

4-day old Violet and mommy Gia

4-day old Violet and mommy Gia

The Ithaca boyz. They look fabulous, eh?

The Ithaca boyz. They look fabulous, eh?

Kenny and I! I met Kenny through Clinton Foundation

Kenny and I! I met Kenny through Clinton Foundation

Hanging in ABCs green room 

Hanging in ABCs green room 

Paul and I posing as anchor people at GMA! 

Paul and I posing as anchor people at GMA!