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Day 2
El Centro, California to Yuma, Arizona
70 miles, 460 feet climbing

Our first full day of working came on day 2. This was a pretty short day, so we served lunch in the parking lot of the destination motel. We worked quickly and just barely managed to get set up before the first riders arrived. This motel turned out to be the nicest one on the trip. Each room was a suite, complete with refrigerator, microwave, and separate sitting room. The pool and Jacuzzi proved to be quite popular in the afternoon. The next morning we discovered that they even had free beer happy hour by the pool later in the day.

But we were busy checking out bike shops and trying to find a place to ride. While looking at maps, we saw some potentially interesting routes, and asked about them at a local shop. They weren't of much help, and recommended a supposed 30 mile ride, that turned out to be on our next days route - and at least 60 miles. I wouldn't normally complain about that distance, but we only wanted a 2 hour ride (to finish by dark) and we didn't want to do roads we'd be doing the next day, so we decided to check out my original idea. This road headed into an Indian reservation, and appeared to climb a canyon. We didn't make it very far though. After the first time we stood, I looked down and screamed at John to "Stop Pedaling Now", as he was about to carve out the bottom bracket shell with his right crank. The eccentric that should have held for thousands of miles had slipped an inch or so to the left.

We looked around the side of the road for repair tools and came up with a large branch and some rubber material to cover the cranks while we tried to hammer the whole assembly back into the frame. This didn't work too well, so we eventually removed the sync chain, so I could pedal us home without the front cranks destroying the frame (or getting scratched). In all my years of tandeming, it's amazing how many smart-alecs have hollered out, "She's not pedaling." But despite the fact that John really wasn't pedaling, and I was sitting in the back huffing and puffing and struggling to get us back to the motel, not one person said, "He's not pedaling." We passed by several PAC Tour riders on their way to dinner - and I tried to point out something was wrong. We even passed Lon with his video camera and got him to tape a few seconds of John being lazy, but I guess the missing chain was too subtle.

Lon offered to lend us Susan's tandem for our ride the next day. Susan offered to rent it to us, $30 per saddle, plus mileage.