Today was a day for pictures and I have even more that could be added since when I arrived in Bristow in the middle of their Tabouli Festival. First the pictures:
- This was a painted window in the Main Street Diner in Chelsea. Travis, my Chelsea host recommended I eat breakfast there which would be a huge deviation from my McD’s breakfast routine.
- Travis has many important roles in Chelsea none more important than heading up the local animal shelter with his wife. They don’t believe in killing any animal and to date have placed 102 dogs. If I was in a car he would have placed 103 dogs as I fell in love with one of the dogs. Designer dogs are great but you may want to check out your local humane society as well. There are some great dogs out there that are already trained.
- Across from the diner was a painting on the wall stating that Chelsea had the first oil well in Oklahoma. Remember when I said each of the towns I stay in have a secret?
- Picture of the inside of the Main Street Diner. The place had all the character of “Cheers” and “Mayberry RFD” combined. Everyone knew each other and didn’t even have to place an order since it was already known. Time kinda’ slowed down in that place and it would have been fun to be part of it.
- For twelve dollars I got two big pancakes, a sausage, two pieces of bacon, two eggs, hashbrowns, and a large chocolate milk. The other downside was they didn’t open till 6:30 which kept me one hour behind all day. IT WAS worth the wait.
- Neatest Route 66 sign I have seen to date. I believe this was in Tulsa.
- The Bristow sign welcoming me to my place of rest tonight.
- A sculpture of horses meeting a car for the first time.
- The neatest train and cars out on exhibit that I have seen. This is also in Tulsa.
Summary: Completed 84.7 miles today in reasonable shape. This puts me just over 80 miles away from Oklahoma and the trip West’s half way point. This is the last time I am going to talk about the wind – it’s no fun. The only difference between yesterday and today is the wind gusted to only 25 MPH instead of yesterday’s 40 MPH gusts.
Stories Remembered . . .
- The other day when I was riding in the rain toward Springfield, MO I forgot to tell you about he marvelous sight behind me. I turned around looking to see if any cars were creeping up on me and I saw a sky of fire. The sun was coming up and backlight the clouds. The entire Eastern sky was backlight in fire orange beautiful outlining the Cumulus clouds. Awe inspiring!
- When I was fixing my bike tire and needed to put air in the tire I pulled the pump off my bike and gave the level a pull/push. Out of the valve came water gushing out like there was no stopping it. It took several pumps to clear the water. I was very grateful for my test as I am not sure what dynamic would be injected with a tire filled with water.
- Lastly, after I put air in my front tire I decided to check the back tire which was fine. I then strapped the pump back on the bike and took off. Fifty miles later when I was checking out the Main Street Diner I noticed my front tire was bouncing. Turns out when I put the axle back in the tire I didn’t tighten it down (because I had the brilliant idea of checking air in the back tire). Lesson, always finish the job at hand before starting something new. If I had hit a pothole yesterday there is a good chance that the tire would have separated from the bike and that wouldn’t have been fun for anyone.
Staying the night at the Bristol Fire Station. Turns out they are having their Tabouli Festival today. One gentleman asked if I was with the other riders. Bristow appears to be a really neat town founded by Lebanese people that settled the town many years ago (hence being known for Tabouli). Will get some pictures to share with you tomorrow.
Turns out that the fire station had some people bring them food from the festival. They graciously offered it to me and I have consumed Tabouli, potato salad, baked beans, ham, and hot dogs. This was after allowing me to put the bike inside and allowing me the luxury of a shower. Life is perfect (although I am on the hunt for a milk shake).
Funny how I think of a hundred stories I want to share with you while riding the bike but as soon as I get off they are all forgotten. I do remember a group of couples talking about people traveling by themselves going crazy. As I remember they were trying to figure out the tell tale symptoms. I developed one of my own. I think when you are riding along and start talking to the cows and horses on the side of the road that would be a good indicator. I started talking to them two days ago.
I also tested out the hypothesis that “bikes can legally drive on the interstates of the Western states” today. I followed my map and left 66W to go on 266W. I took this step since Google told me to and it was out of the wind that I was extremely tired of fighting through. I had a choice of continuing on 266W for another couple of miles or getting on I-44 which really tracks to 66W. I was on I-44 for 5 miles until it let me off on 66W. On this track I passed two State Policemen. The fact that they didn’t stop me proved the hypothesis. The “cheating” side of my nature was tempted to stay on I-44 longer since it is a direct route with cars/trucks passing me and drafting me along. I choose to get off since that is the real 66W experience and the Interstate in no place for a bike.
Good night and God bless!