Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Day 18 - Bowling Green, OH to Monroeville, IN

Total miles for the day: 94
Total miles to date: 880
I hit my record high miles in one day - I think I would like to credit this to the delicious smoothie my amazing host, Lisa, made me for breakfast! I pushed off nice and early at 7:00 into the warm rain. I never thought I would be so pleased to ride in the rain, but I had tailwinds baby and that makes everything so sweet! Often times during the day I create small goals such as 1 more hour, or 10 more miles, or reach the next town and I will treat myself to a phone call to a friend, a nap, a snack etc. This morning my goal was to reach the next town's laundromat and by this time the weather had dropped and I was cold and wet (30 miles journey) - I never dreamed I would be so motivated and thrilled to reach a laundromat. Once I arrived I changed clothes and threw all of my sopping clothes in the dryer and had a nice picnic lunch in the laundromat. It was heavenly! I struck up a conversation with an elderly woman and on her way out she handed me a $10 bill and told me treat myself to a nice dinner. I accepted the money not because I needed the money, but it meant the world to her that she helped a girl such as myself out. Funny moment of the day: there was a junction 5 miles outside of a town called Defiance. I was stopped at the stop sign next to a car and this elderly woman in her car looks at me like, "go to hell you damn bicyclist!" I shrugged my shoulders confused as to her hatred filled gesture - I laughed and gave her a sarcastic wave. About 30 minutes later I had arrived into the town and I pulled up to a stop light - it was the same woman! I laughed and got real close to her car and just waved sarcastically, this of course made her even more angry as evidenced by her facial expressions. Her anger confused and amused me. I rolled into Monroeville around 5:30 met by Warren who volunteers to manage the Town Pavilion. This tiny town of 1,500 have established a shelter for touring cyclists including shower, laundry, and a kitchen to cyclists to use free of charge! This adorable retired elderly man exuded Monroeville pride and gave me the rundown of the history of the cyclists that had made a stop in his town. Adventure Cycling even awarded this town in 2005 as the best hospitable town on the established bike routes throughout America. I summoned some energy after showering and settling my things for the evening to head to the booming downtown. I hung out with some high school kids at the Whippy Dippy for some hard earned ice cream. I finally found the courage to step into a small town bar. The Kickin Chicken and had a fantastically interesting evening. As I opened the door cautiously to assess the establishment, it was like a scene from a movie. The 9 men and one woman turned their head fixated on this outsider walking into their bar. I sat with my beer for a short period until Dale struck up a conversation. Soon there after many of the locals stretched their necks and ears to join the conversation. The drinks offers multiplied the longer I sat in the bar. It was time to go when the good ole' boys started to get a little rowdy. The owner/bartender, Darrel, apologized for their behavior, but I would have felt jipped had they not been themselves. Darrel the owner asked about my plans for breakfast and he offered a breakfast on him if I came back in the morning. "My wife Missy is cooking breakfast, she will take care of you," Darrell said. Another great day!

1 comment:

  1. Hello! I saw your blog thru a friend's blog... was interested b/c my husband did a cross country tour about 10 years ago. Then, of course, I had to read about your adventures in Ohio! We live in Columbus... sorry about the grouchy lady... I wish I could say I was surprised. As you discovered, tho, there are many nice people here. Now, after reading your Ohio adventure, I checked out your profile info - I am an O&M instructor! Good luck with your travels and your school. The blind/low vision field is such a great field to be in! Such a small world... maybe not when you are riding a bike, tho. : )