Something that has struck me so far is that while the history of this part of the world covers just a couple of hundred years (rather than a couple of thousand in the UK) a huge amount has happened in that time. All of this by people brave, lucky or just tough enough to make a new life through the extremes of the environment. While what I’m doing isn’t easy, I’m benefiting from good roads (mostly), a ready supply of food and other services and the latest technology to help me along. So I was amused to see this piece from a similar perspective in a local paper in the weather forcast:
(Here’s more about the current weather ” the most uncomfortably hot weather .” from his blog)
Have I found an inner pioneer? In some respects, yes – despite temperatures in the mid 30’s, humidity in the 80’s and a constant headwind that feels like the blast when you open the oven door, I’ve been managing around 100k per day. A very slow 100k – rests and cycling have taken up more than 12 hours of the day. Those of you following me on strava will have seen my average speed dip below 10mph!
But I’ve also made full use of air conditioned petrol station shops, and consumed the refrigerated sweet drinks on sale. At one point I lay in the shade of some corn for a quick rest and snooze – all sounds very pioneer like, except the corn was genetically engineered! Not so pioneer.
Despite my reduced pace, since my last post from Minnesota, I’ve been ticking off the states. From Minnesota I popped into South Dakota:
Then back into Minnesota
Then onto Iowa
And I’m now in Nebraska
What’s next? Well if all goes well, tomorrow I should be passing through Blair – yes, the end of stage 6 and the quarter way mark of the trip!
That’s all for now except for a couple of photos:
Fortunately I’m eating well and have not had to resort to this for a fresh snack:
An impressive display of more bugs at the motel i stayed at by Ortonville:
Far more impressive than this was the old gentleman from Minnesota I’d only briefly chatted with at breakfast – who wanted to pay for my room ! I politely declined his offer – but continue to be amazed (and shocked!) that what I am doing is inspiring this level of generosity from complete strangers.