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Never Ending Hills

Hank – Today was a long day. We left Junction at 8:30 and it was chilly. We had one place to stop on our 57 or so mile trek to Sonora. That was Roosevelt, Texas population 14 about 20 miles into the trip. Surprisingly, Roosevelt has a store and a cafe. We ordered a big breakfast to keep us fueled for the next 40 miles.

The store has a post office in it and I had a couple of small packages to ship. It took a while because everything was done old school. The postmaster asked me brought me here from Spokane and I told him we were on a cycling adventure. “Oh, you must be Hank,” he says. He saw the name plates on our bikes.

The steep climb out of Roosevelt was a slap in the face. It didn’t get worse but it stayed bad the rest of the day. Then Kathy picked up a piece of wire in her front tire. One more flat to change. That must be 13 or 14 for her. Yesterday was my third or fourth. But while she was changing her tire I examined mine and found a couple of cuts in the sidewall if my front tire. I hadn’t noticed them before but then I haven’t looked in a long time either so I don’t know if they’re a day or a month old. I’m getting close to needing new tires anyway. Now I just have something else to worry about until I get them. After checking into our hotel I took the tire off and reinforced the inside of the cuts with a couple layers of duct tape.

The ride was mentally draining for me. Kathy was having a bad day and I felt bad for her. We’d slide down a short bit and then climb for a mile. Wash, rinse, repeat. What a relief to get to Sonora.

After cleaning up we had a nice dinner at a restaurant next door. Back at the room I reinforced my tire and patched the tube Kathy flatted today. Hopefully we both get a good night’s sleep.

Kathy – Today was a tough day for me. We started the day off in 38 degree temps with headwinds and sidewinds at 15 mph. It was sunny with clear blue skies, but pretty chilly. I started the day with frozen toes and hands, an upset stomach, and a sore bottom. The cold, winds, and constant elevation increases just added to the daily discomforts.

I am also really missing our children, other family members (on both Hank’s and my side) and all of our friends. I have a lot of family members and close friends birthdays recently and/or coming up. I feel like I am missing out on quality times with friend and family members while on this 17 month journey. I’m not only missing special birthday times but also other times with family and friends such as fun times together with simple conversations.

No matter how I tried to flip the day to a positive it didn’t work. I just wanted to cry, but crying meant cold tears running down my face while riding (and that’s not good) and having a runny nose (not good either while riding). So I tried really hard to breathe and think of other things. I didn’t cry but it didn’t change the sadness I felt throughout the day. It was also a tough 60 mile day of riding with all the elevation. We climbed all day.

Today was a beautiful sunny ride day (except for the cold, winds, and elevation) but I couldn’t get into the ride. We had noisy freeway traffic wizzing by us all day. The West Texas terrain consisted of high brown grass, lots of cactus, an occasional yellow rock formation, and a few green trees in the middle of a whole lot of nothing. We did have more than enough roadkill to smell (and dodge around) throughout the day. I synced my music to my hearing aids (via bluetooth at a low volume) to try to shake off the negative ride thoughts and the thoughts of missing family and friends. Didn’t work. I was more than happy to arrive at our destination after 6-8 hours of exercise today. Some days just aren’t fun. Hoping for a better day tomorrow.

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3 Comments

  1. Keep the faith, tomorrow will be better. Be safe. Hugs to you cyclists

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  2. Not sure if it is the right lyric to quote. But I’m thinking of the Van Morrison song. Well Mama told me there’d be days like this. I’m frankly surprised there haven’t been more of them.

    Be safe. And as the other commenter said, keep the faith.

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  3. Great picture of the legends if it’s true. Hope your tires get you to a place that can replace them. Stay strong Kathy.

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