Distance 62 miles, 11.1 mph average, ride time 5:35, Total time on road 8 hours and 10 minutes, expenses $115.40
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Ed had to be to work by 6:30 which allowed me a good early start for today’s ride. The temperature was down made for somewhat of a cool ride, felt good for a change. Today’s entire ride was on State Hwy 35 with mostly a good shoulder. By the time I reached DeSoto a light rain began to fall so took a break to have what else but a BLT on wheat toast with mayo, it’s one of my comfort foods. After waiting an extra 20 minutes in the restaurant decided the rain was only getting worse. Thus I mounted Spirit and hoped for the best. I hadn’t gone but a couple miles and the light rain became a steady downpour.
By the time I made it to Lynxville, about 16 miles I was beginning to get a chill even with riding hard as I could the whole way. As I rolled into town I saw a little wheeled hot dog stand, The Dawg House, claiming to serve “World Famous Dawg’s” such as Chicago style dawgs using Vienna hot dogs. Well they got the right hot dog and this is another of my favorite foods that I rarely have the opportunity to enjoy living in SW Missouri. Thought to myself I’d stop and have one if they only had someplace to sit out of the rain. OK, this is unreal as I rode past the stand which was sitting next to the car garage of a residential home the overhead garage doors were open and a picnic table was inside as well as a padded lawn chair. Instantly I did a turn-around, pulled up to the stand and got me one of them Chicago Hot Dogs. Oh it was soooo good. After savoring every morsel of this sinfully delightful treat I went back to the stand for another soft drink. I really didn’t want to go back out into the rain, anyway. This time I introduced myself to the lady in the trailer and she to me, Kim Schneden is her name and turned out she is the owner of the hot dog stand and of the house. I had seen a furniture moving blanket in her garage and I asked Kim if I might use it to cover up and sit in her lawn chair awhile as I was starting to shiver and didn’t want to run the risk of getting hyperthermia. Kim told me to help myself to whatever I needed in the way of covers in the garage in order to stay warm. In addition to the furniture blanket I had saw a couple sleeping bags but didn’t want to get them wet from my body. I thanked Kim for her kindness and went back in the garage wrapped the furniture blanket around me and sat down in the lawn chair which was exceptionally comfortable. After about half an hour, a young man came out of the house and into the garage for a smoke. Turned out it was Kim’s son and a bicyclist, too. We visited for maybe another 20 minutes, still no let up in the rain. Dang, I’m getting old I can’t remember Kim’s son’s name. Anyway, he told me it hadn’t rained for almost two months and though the rain was not good for me the area really needed it. I thought to myself, perhaps I should start promoting myself as a “Rain Maker” as this is the 3rd time I’ve been rained on in 10 days during what is considered the worse draught since the early 50s and soon to equal the “Dust Bowl” era of the 30s. I can see it now, “Old Guy rides into draught stricken town and the sky opens up with rain”. Wonder how much I could make doing that?
Kim’s son went back into the house and I was once again alone watching the rain continue to pour. About another half hour and Kim came into the garage to restock food stuff in the little trailer. While in the garage she asked how I was doing and I told her getting a little chilled yet. With my answer, Kim walked over to the sleeping bags unrolled one and wrapped it around me. Random acts of kindness are a daily occurrence on this journey and once again I find myself thinking of Fred’s words, “God will provide in your time of need”. He sure is taking care of the Old Guy, not doubt about it.Finally the rain appeared to be done. I put away the sleeping bag, folded up the furniture blanket and stopped to thank Kim for her kindness. Once again Spirit and I were rolling down the road. We didn’t get but maybe a mile or two and the sky opened up with another deluge. Well, can’t have it too easy can I. About 3 miles outside of Prairie du Chien it was like a wall stopped the rain. In less then a half mile the pavement wasn’t even wet allowing for the last 5 miles to be a nice uneventful ride.
Tonight I would be staying at a motel, the Windsor Place Inn on the south side of the community. Glad to have this day done, I dismounted and went into the office to register. The room rate was considerably higher than I like to pay but after riding in the rain over half the day I was just thankful I wasn’t pitching my tent. I also needed to do laundry, an every other day need, but learned there was no guest laundry. After pleading my need to do laundry the receptionist said she would ask Brian the owner of the Inn to allow me to wash my clothes in theInn’s use only commercial washer. Brian said yes but only after they got today’s laundry for the inn done which would be about seven in the evening. I went to the front desk at seven but the inn’s laundry was still being washed. Trying back at 7:30 Brian was at the desk and I introduced myself to him. I thanked him for allowing me to do my laundry as well as having a very nice inn with large rooms, exceptionally clean and well maintained inn. Brian thanked me for noticing and said he works hard to keep the place nice. It definitely shows, too. Brian then surprised me by saying he’d do my laundry for me. I appreciated his offer but said I’d be glad to do as my clothes needed TLC washed in cold water on delicate cycle or hand wash cycle, then dried on very low heat for only a few minutes. Brian assured me he would do that and sure enough about an hour later he phoned my room to tell me my laundry was done, he even folded my clothes for me. I gotta tell you the Windsor Place Inn onMarquette Roadin Prairie du Chien maybe a little expensive for this Old Guy but you get a lot of bang for your buck. Put thisInnon your place to stay if ever in Prairie du Chien.