2015 Ride To Remember
Sam Blumenstein  Friday, 19 June, 2015

This years R2R was held in Nashville Tennessee. I was the only Australian at this years event although there were two YOW Australia members, myself and Lauren Secular from New York City. A group of three including Lauren, Rich Bernstein (Chai Riders NY) and I rode from New York to Nashville via Pennsylvannia, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina and into Tennessee. We covered in total about 2300 miles or 3700 kms. This included a great deal of highway miles but on the way down we took some excellent back roads in North Carolina and Tennessee to finally arrive into Nashville. For me personally the highlight was finally meeting a cousin I've never met who lives close to Chattanooga and the Whitwell (Paperclips Project) Middle School. This was the third time I've been in this area but finally managed to hook up with cousin "Candy". She is family on my mothers side.

We experienced some rain, plenty of hot weather and a number of thunder and lightning storms on various parts of the journey. I rode home with Lauren since Rich wanted to hang around an extra day. We did a direct return run over two days. We only had rain for about 30 miles out of the 900+ mile return journey. We came into Manhattan in the late afternoon on a pretty hot day after a 600+ mile stint that day.

Lots of great places in New York City like Katz's Deli (delicious pastrami and kneidel filled chicken soup). Had a chance to meet good friends in New Jersey as well as family. On the way home in Los Angeles my cousin gave me a treat and took me to the Richard Nixon Library in Orange County where former Israeli Ambassador to the U.S Michael Oren was giving a talk and promoting his new book "Ally". We were fortunate enough to get signed copies. Excellent book and well worth the read.

Next year the R2R will be held in Alabama but I will not be there. I will be riding Israel for the third time hopefully.