Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Day 27

Wednesday, August 3

Miles today: 72

Today was another great day. We woke up at 5:20- twenty minutes late because we didn't hear the alarm over the sweet hum of the air conditioner. We had our free Continental breakfast, which was actually really good- coffee, bagels, English muffins, yogurt, juice, bananas- and then we hit the road at about 6:50 am and it was already hot out! We had fun riding in the hills for about 30 miles before it got too bad outside. We started this game where we go into the hardest gear on the downhill and pedal as hard as possible and see how far we can get up the next hill. Sometimes we get enough speed that we can just coast up the hill and that is how you win the game! This hill was awesome to ride down and if I remember correctly, i think we both won on the uphill! (the picture is from the "bottom" of the hill, looking backwards)

We had a nice break before noon and then had about 20 miles until our next town. By the time we rolled into Greenfield at about 2pm we were both completely wiped out and unbearably hot. We went into the first gas station and stood directly in front of the fan for a good while to cool down. We still had 15 miles left in the day, but we were so tired from the constant hills that we knew we couldn't go back out in the heat without a long rest first. Luckily, we got to talking to this little girl who told us that there is a public pool in town and it only costs $1 per person! We didn't need to hear anymore- we were sold! We rode over to the pool and spent 3 hours enjoying the cooloff. It was just what we needed! Ben even joined in on a game of water-baseball with the local 7th graders

We left Greenfield around 5pm and all of a sudden the hills disappeared! One minute they were everywhere, the next it's completely flat! We had an awesome, fast rest of the ride and we went directly to Cooky's Cafe, which was recommended by other bikers and the lifeguards at the pool. We were certainly not disappointed at all and stuffed ourselves with deliciousness. I got chicken breast, greenbeans, salad, and French fries and Ben got beef brisket with beets, salad and French fries. We finished it off with Cooky's famous homemade pie- strawberry rhubarb for me and blackberry for ben. Along with 2 soft drinks, the total was $20.15. It was a steal if you ask me.

On top of an excellent dinner, the manager of the restaurant heard us ask if there was a motel in town (no, nothing for 15 miles so we would be camping in the park, with a low temp of 85 tonight) and he took it upon himself to call the church in town to see if we could stay there. We were so grateful both to the manager and the minister who allowed us to stay in his beautiful and air conditioned church! As it turns out, the minister's wife lived in North Kingstown, RI in the 60s for 2 years! What a small world! Although, she did pronounce it "north kings-ton" so I know she didn't stay very long.

We are headed into Kansas tomorrow! I am looking forward to the flat land but am wary of the winds that could either be our best friend or worst enemy, depending on direction. It'll be another hot one tomorrow so we'll continue our efforts to get up early, even though it's never as early as we plan. We'll also continue our efforts to find air conditioned sleeping arrangements! I'll miss Missouri and its kind folk... We only slept outside once in the whole week were we here! Lets hope we can keep up the trend, or better yet, a cold front comes in.

It looks like the heat really took it out of Ben today

I guess pajamas are too much of a luxury for those who are nuts enough to ride their bikes for 7 hours a day in the dead of summer!

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