Posted by: twistsoffeet | July 25, 2011

It always seems that just when I need…

This morning I woke up to a cold damp and grey day. I was certain it would start pouring rain at any moment so I almost rolled over to go back to sleep. Instead I decided at 05:00 this morning to take a chance and try to ride. Out of my tent I crawled braving man eating mosquito’s that didn’t seem to be anywhere around until I crawled out of my protective cocoon. I quickly packed my gear and headed to a local convenience store for a cup of coffee and to find out what the locals were saying about the possibility of rain. Ultimately it really did not help to speak to the locals because half said it was going to pour any moment and the other half said it was going to clear up soon.
I decided to take my chances and ride today even though my Arthritis was incredibly angry with me and did not want to cooperate with my plans for riding.Today I came out on top when I overruled my RA and decided to ride. Although to be honest my RA decided to punish me for not listening to it and threw a major tantrum that caused every fiber of my body to want to scream, But I didn’t give in to this temptation either and kept it to myself.
Off I rode in the cold damp air fighting my RA every step of the way. I was wearing a heavy fleece pullover sweater and still was cold. The ride itself was relatively pleasant flat riding with a slight tailwind sometimes and a slight headwind other times. I tried talking to the local cows again and actually got one of them to respond and let me tell you he was not happy with my butchering of his language. He obviously had no sense of humor.
At about 27 miles into the ride this time in a way that it was virtually unrepairable on the road without a new part. I managed to engineer a temporary fix but I knew it wouldn’t last long. I did however hope it would hold until I reached Valentine 25 mi.les down the road. Unfortunately what I hope for and what happens is not always the same thing and after less than 2 miles my temporary repair broke.
It just happened that this time it broke in the town of Johnstown, Population 53. I smelled something delicious in the air and saw that 100 yards away was a little cafeteria and it smelled delicious. I decided to ask the proprietor if there was anywhere in town I I could get the part I needed even though I was absolutely certain it would not be possible and I was correct.
They were serving a Buffet lunch and it smelled so good I had to go for it and eat, you know comfort food when your stressed and frustrated. I had fried chicken with mashed potato’s gravy and fresh beets all homemade down home farm cooking. I also had a salad and a pasta salad and a fruit salad with cottage cheese and watermelon. Oh I can’t forget the linguini with meatballs. What can I say it was a Buffet and I was going to get my monies worth.
I had no other choice so I took my bike and trailer to the side of the road where I stuck out my thumb. I had received offers from people in the cafe to take me the other direction but no one was going my direction. I wasn’t having much luck with hitching a ride from trucks going my direction when a man came out of the restaurant and drove up to me. After explaining my situation he offered to take me to Valentine. The Problem was that he was driving a Taurus station wagon and I was certain we wouldn’t be able to get my gear inside. Once again I was wrong. I was now 0 for 2 on my attempts to think today so maybe I should just stop trying today.
The man who rescued me today Ron Andrus was very friendly and gave me a history lesson and geographical lesson during the ride. As we were entering Valentine and he asked me where I wanted him to take me suddenly turned and drove over to the local farm supply store. I really doubted they or any other store would be able to provide me with the part I needed but it turned out it took less than 2 minutes to go in the store find a part that was almost an exact duplicate of what I needed and pay for it. I was now 0 for 3 on trying to think and I am through with any further attempts for the day.
Ron took me to the Valentine city park which was actually about 1/2 mile north of town. As he dropped me off he showed me some photo’s of a Halibut he had caught in Alaska along with a monster 339 pound Halibut someone else had caught. He dropped me off and said he would be back in a couple of hours just to make certain I was able to repair my trailer.
So now I am sitting in in a park in Valentine NE firmly resolved to attempt no more thinking for the day. This park is almost a mountain like park down in a little valley heavily wooded and very relaxing. There are many other people here having Sunday family picnic’s enjoying a cool breeze fresh air and lot’s of shade. There are bathrooms and though not really convenient I have located electrical outlets also and there is fresh water. The water here is the best I have tasted in a while and reminds me of mountain water.
It is somewhat amazing to me that it always seems that just when things are really falling apart and I become very worried about how I will salvage my day and this tour some good Samaritan comes along and helps me out. There always seems to be good people around who are able and willing to help someone who needs their help and for these people I am very grateful.
My RA is still screaming at me though and I would really like some relief from that pain but I will happily accept the blessings that are handed to me and be thankful for all of them.



  1. Glad your spirits are rising!

  2. Remember way back to Barnesville where we had just had the tornado. I have been following your journey all the way. So glad you have been able to continue on. I know your dad will be happy to see you. I keep Roy up to date on your travels. Happy travels. Not much farther is it?

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