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  • Writer's picturePatrick Baechle

No rooms at the inn in Bethlehem

ast dead.

I just needed some place where I can lay my head.

"Hey mister can you tell me where a man might find a bed?"

He just grinned and shook his head, "No" is all he said.

Doo doo doo doo doo

Take the road to Beth'lem

Take the road for free,

Take the road to Beth'lem


There's music and good bands to see.

So. I am riding into Nazareth, Pennsylvania last evening. I am dog tired and I needed a place to stay. There are no campsites around the area and hotels, within a 20 mile radius, are $280 to $400. I did some searching was able to get the last room in a bed and breakfast, in Bethlehem PA., about 10 miles away.

When I got there, I found out why room rates were so high. This was Musicfest week in Bethlahem, and what a fest it is! I just arrived a, what I'm told, is the lar

gest, annual, free, music Festival in the Northeast. There are eight stages in two parts of town. There is food and drink galore. The grounds are jumpin with activity. These events go on for ten days.

I walked over to the festival and hung out for a short while with my people, the sextegenarians, and listened to 'The Large Flowerheads' band. They were kickin' out some rockin 60's jams, but, as I moved around the grounds, I found myself irrisistably idrawn into the tent of this ten piece Cuban Salsa band, LA MEGA, who were blowin the horns like there was no tomorrow and swinging the house down to the souls of there dancin feet. Which all were up upon and dancin on.

Needless to say I was very thirsty from my ride and was needing a lot of rehydration fluids this evening. I really enjoyed the music; had some nice eats, and walked back across the bridges to my B&B, about midnight, to crash. It was exactly what I needed. I just love live music and can't get enough of it. From the log of my fellow cyclist Pat McGinnis, currently riding across the country on the Salt to Salt tour; "I needed some Music Therapy".

Big shout out to you today Patrick, where ever you are. I feel your pain brother. Keep on truckin.

This morning I rode down to the Southside festival grounds. They are located in front of the Bethlehem steel furnace ruins. They have an elevated platform there where you walk along the entire length of the old black, rusty furnaces. You can also get guided tours here. I spent about an hour exploring this behemoth,all while listening to a band playing from a stage below. I was completely fascinated with the complexity of the whole thing. It was actually quite beautiful from a sculptural perspective. What an awesome industry they had here. What a thoughtful group of planners and investors, to have decided to preserve this enormous industrial complex and open it to visitors, as a historical landmark. This is something that will help us remember our nation's industrial heritage. Something hard to imagine from photos or writing.

Today I moved through Allentown and trail rode up the Lehigh River towards Jim Thorpe, like a village right out of the Pyranese mountains with stone buildings and narrow winding streets.

I met a fellow bicycle packer along the way. We rode together for about 20 miles and had some giood conversations.

I'm camping now up on a mountain outside of Jim Thorpe. The campers next to me, Bill and Susan, gave me a baked potato and shared a couple of Miller lites with me.

It was a good weekend.

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