Yesterday I got up later than my usual 5 because I wanted to see more people but today I said screw that- getting out too late just means I have to wait in longer lines. So today was a super early day. I got up about 4:30 and was riding before 5:30. I felt strong, made great time, and thoroughly enjoyed the sunrise. The towns today weren't as tempting as yesterday, but I still stopped a few times for brownies and water. I also stumbled on the best idea ever- I filled a ziplock bag with ice and rode with it in my jersey pocket. It kept me so cool! And every time I got a little extra hot, I'd just take it out and hold it on my neck, or where ever. I'll do that every day from now on!
The weather was hot again and the winds stronger, but we did some northerly riding and a lot of east. I layed on a blanket in someone's yard for a good long while and enjoyed the conversation. The host family put up with all my dumb questions about their corn fields.
Yesterday we had an Irish band playing at our charter service- they were super good. And they're doing our laundry today- what a gift. They have been so great.
On a sad note, I learned yesterday that my Uncle Johnny died. I feel sad about it and I cried a bunch- we weren't close, I knew he was very ill, but still it makes me sad. I really considered coming home, but after talking to my family, have decided to stay. All things being considered, I don't know if I could make it home in time for his service if I wanted to get there. So, I'm riding in his memory. Tell Grandma I said hi Uncle Johnny!
I've just gotten to town here in Cedar Rapids- this is a pretty big town- tonight there will be a Blues Traveler concert and Lance is giving a talk. Someone said that John Kerry and John Edwards were riding today, but there also seem to be a lot of urban myths going on...people think Matthew Maconohey (sp?) is riding, they think Robin Williams is riding, and best of all, someone claims to have spotted Oprah. Yeah, Oprah. Go figure.
Every night there has been music/party scene but I don't go- I can hear the music just fine as I'm trying to sleep, besides the party scene has never been my thang. I guess lots of others are enjoying it.
I'm off now to "shower"- the charter service has this shower thingy set up- it's really just an elaborate series of hoses and you "shower" out in the open- everyone just keeps their bike clothes on which need a good rinsing anyway- the water is ice cold but feels great.
Ok, that's it for now. Thanks everyone for posting, it has made me so happy!
Today will be about 70+ miles after I'm done riding around town.
Oh, and TWO random strangers reached out today and smacked me on the ass, much to my surprise. And when I told someone people that it happened a guy walked over and said, "Ok, this makes three" and gave me another one. I told the first guy he was pretty balsy for doing that! Maybe he knew the other guy and they were in cahoots. Oh well, they're only human, right?!