Ordinary People,
Extraordinary Things


Discover everyday people and their amazing stories.


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Week One: The Journey Begins

Carol’s journey began in the chill of the early morning when she pushed her bike through the beach sands of St. Augustine in Florida.

“Before I could begin today, I needed to dip my tire in the Atlantic Ocean,” she says. “And when I reach California one of the first things I’ll do, is bring my bike to the Pacific Ocean.” This wheel dip is a long-held tradition among the cyclists that ride coast to coast.

Carol Garsee with her bike on the Florida coast.
“Life is calling, and we are a dozen seniors answering that call.”
Map of part of Florida with red pins on Carol's stops for the first week, starting in St. Augustine.

Once on the road, it proved to be a tough first day with harsh weather. Carol explains, “We were riding against high winds and it was challenging. My normal speed is usually up to 16 miles per hour, but the fastest I could go was 13 miles per hour.”

Although the start of the ride was difficult, Carol says it was a great kick-off to her adventure. She says she was delighted to see the sites along the way, especially the St. John’s River and murals of Palatka. “It was an inspiring day. Life is calling, and we are a dozen seniors answering that call.”

About Carol
Carol Garsee

Carol Zemola Garsee is inspiring others to embrace a healthier lifestyle as she bikes cross-country in the adventure of a lifetime. First inspired by her mother who was an avid cyclist, this 77-year-old continues to ride. What started as a necessity to get around Chicago, her love of biking blossomed into long-distance riding. This is Carol’s second cross-country trip. She has also ridden through several states, Italy, and Canada.