My first stop this morning was the bike shop in El Dorado. The staff there were fantastic and gave Harmony a quick look over for free and gave me some advice about the road ahead. Apparently Trek dealers may do free tuneups on my bike so I’m going to check that out as I go along.
I’ve noticed the girls have become increasingly attractive as I move through Kansas. To be honest I had not seen a cute girl the first few days in this state and was beginning to wonder what was going on. Also, is Wichita State University’s mascot really a talking bushel of hay? Wow….
The road has really flattened out and I’m starting to make really good time. The late start this morning really didn’t slow me up and if things stay like this I may end up in Albuquerque sooner than I thought. I’m certainly not rushing and I’m open to all life has to offer me but it is nice to feel like I’m moving quickly again when I want to.
Mentally I’ve been a little down the last couple days. Some of it is really stupid. For example, I’m apparently on or near a popular path for cross country bike rides which makes me feel like what I’m doing isn’t that big of a deal. I know I shouldn’t let others accomplishments affect me but it drains me sometimes. I especially shouldn’t care because I am doing it so differently. Most people are going west to east and are part of teams with equipment vans that carry all their stuff. They aren’t strapping their life to their back and just seeing what is out there. They are participating in a sport, I’m in a journey. That isn’t to say one is better than the other, it’s just different.
I also find myself missing my friends from the DC area more and more. I’m introverted and comfortable alone but I’m used to seeing these people regularly and it is now starting to wear on me a bit. It hit me especially hard when I realized FreedomFest is coming up in Vegas next week and I remember the great times that we all had last year. I played with some ideas for how to get there including riding to Vegas (no chance… 1100ish miles in 7 days ain’t happening) or flying from Albuquerque to Vegas (technically possible but not reasonable). I knew would miss things like this when I set out on the journey, it’s just been a rough week and I know I have several days still ahead.
I’ve been able to focus in different sources of inspiration during these times an and the fact that I’m likely over halfway done really excites me. It is so bittersweet to think about this journey ending at some point but I know this will not be my last adventure. By the way, http://www.reserveamerica.com is a fantastic website for people who like camping.
After some rough roads I found my way to Cheney Lake for another night of camping. The lake is nice and there are a ton of people here but it is definitely getting tough to find trees. Most of the camping spots don’t have any trees and I was lucky to find one that had a little shade. I was invited over to an amazing dinner by my camping neighbors, The John Deere Crew. They are Wichita locals and I had a great time hanging with them for the evening. We drank beer, listened to NASCAR, discussed movies, talked about my potential as an axe murderer, i saw chewing tobacco used as hornet sting remedy, and tons of other stuff. We even discussed who would play everyone when my book becomes a movie and I promised to bring them all with me when I interview on the Ellen Show. It was a really good night and I’m glad I camped here.
On the weather front it looks like i may get some rain in the next few days, forecasts say isolated thunderstorms in the region until Tuesday. Should be fun.
You have the right attitude!!! You ARE on a journey and not doing this for a sport. Hang in there!!! Jim Keller, Columbus, Ohio
Im glad you joined up for dinner while you were out at Cheney lake. The John Deere crew defiantly enjoyed meeting you, travel safe and please keep up the blogs of your journey!
Sharron & the rest of the John Deere Crew, Wichita, KS
Me too! I had such a great time with y’all. It was a pleasure meeting everyone.