I started the morning with my Nike T-shirt on inside-out. Izzat cool or what? A nice lady from Scotland pointed it out to me while I was wolfing down my Raisin Bran in the motel breakfast room. I guess the other people liked it, maybe viewed it as a fashion statement? Us guys from Oregon are so hip, eh? So why does Nike make their logo the same on both sides of their dang T-shirts?
The talking heads on TV said the local temp was 80 degrees at 6:00am, high expected to be 92+ which sounded like a really good reason to get the heck out of the area. As soon as I finished eating I packed it up and headed out. My general direction was towards Kansas City, MO where I expect to hook up with a bud and lay low for a day or so.
Since it’s so hot I’m carrying 2 water bottles instead of 1 and I’m riding a lot slower so the bike doesn’t have to work as hard. Today I wore just the Bohn armor shirt by itself and the pants underneath my Levis. It’s not the best setup for protective gear but it’s better than plain old T-shirts like the locals seem to favor. I doubt any of them have had the pleasure of an unscheduled dismount yet. As soon as they do they’ll be wearing all the gear just like me. Or maybe not riding at all?
I still haven’t found a new battery for my cell phone but it seems to work when it’s plugged in. That’s the pits but maybe I’ll find one in Kansas City tomorrow. Speaking of which today’s ride was not all that long, something on the order of 240 miles so I’m still 348 from Kansas City. In this heat I may not ride that far so it may be Tuesday before I get there. No big deal, my schedule is open, eh?
Hey, how about the food report! Breakfast was at the motel which I’ve already touched on. Raisin Bran & fat city mini-pastries, etc. Lunch was another matter. There’s a restaurant chain in the south called The Waffle House that I sort of got addicted to during my working years when I spent a lot of time in Atlanta. Today I figured I’d hook up with one of them for lunch so when I spotted one I pulled in, parked, took a photo just to prove they really exist, and waltzed in for a waffle fix. After waiting 30 minutes for my waffle to arrive and watching the only two cooks leave the work area for their “lunch break” I decided I could wait until another time for my waffle. What a bunch of clods those idiots were, but hey, that’s their prerogative, maybe they already have all the business they need. I cancelled my order, paid for the milk I’d drunk and moved along to the next available lunch source, the one with the big yellow arches. Mmm… No waiting in their places.
The balance of the day’s ride was evenly divided between back roads and the slab. One thing I noticed about Illinois was the lack of appropriate facilities at their rest stops. Maybe the presence of large trees precluded the necessity for anything else? Hey, it worked for me, I’m accustomed to stepping behind a large tree and the one I used today was very large indeed.
Moving along towards Missouri I spotted a truly elaborate sign beckoning the weary traveler to stop for a moment of relaxation. The part I liked best was the “’Who’s Ur Daddy” I'm so easily entertained... Unfortunately I was on the wrong side of the road so all I could do was photograph the sign and move along.
I arrived in the city of Farmington, MO in late afternoon and decided this was as good a place as any to spend the night. The monster Super 8 sign was 10 feet higher than anyone else’s so I opted for their place. Hey, it pays to advertise. Besides I hadn’t stayed at one of their places for awhile and their prices are low, low, low.
I checked in, unloaded El Nino, oiled the chain and put her to bed for the night. Email was the next item on my to-do list and then it was dinner time. An Italian restaurant was conveniently located within easy walking distance so the choice was simple. My meal was OK but not memorable, probably due to the huge quantity of steamed broccoli that accompanied the chicken breast. I mean, how much broccoli can one person consume in a lifetime? Assuming you’re not a goat? Think about it.