We're just outside of Toledo, OH tonight. We decided to get a hotel tonight to hide from the heat and humidity. We rode about 75 miles today with a strong wind at our backs most of the way. Around noon, Dylan broke a spoke on his rear wheel while we were 30 miles away from the nearest bike shop. When you break one spoke, it's only a matter of time before more of them start breaking and then you're really in trouble. Dylan decided to tough it out and try to make it to the next shop. So, we took off as much weight as possible from his rear wheel and divvied up his bags. He rode the 30 miles standing up in order to keep his weight off the wheel! So, it was a long afternoon for him, but he made it and the bike shop owner fixed everything for free (a fairly common trend in bike shops around the country).
Going into the trip, I knew that I would have a hard time being away from home. I knew that I would miss my family but I also knew that I would miss my house and my hometown.
We've been on the road now for 9 weeks and there have been plenty of times when I would kill for something familiar. We sleep in a different place each night. We eat at three new tables each day and ride new roads for 60 miles. There really is nothing familiar about each day and that's been an experience unlike anything I've ever really gone through. Normally, when I'm in a new place or situation, I can almost always know that soon things will go back to being routine and comfortable. But that's not true on this trip. The only things that are routine and familiar are my bike seat and my the 5 people around me.
Last weekend, I had the opportunity to go home for 2 days. When I walked into the house I felt this intense joy at finally seeing something familiar. I guess I don't have much of a point here other than to thank my family and friends for making my time at home really enjoyable. It was great to just rest on a familiar couch near people who love me and were excited to have me around.