Friday, September 05, 2008

tom's fence

tom's fence
Originally uploaded by rod lewis
August 15, 2008
To Macon, Missouri
469 miles (7,987)

Determined to make up the miles I’d lost to the storm, I set my alarm for early and promised myself I’d make it to St. Louis and be back on track. Apparently, in my morning stupor, things weren’t all that important to me, so I turned off my alarm and slept myself out. When I finally did become coherent, I had a moment of panic and then decided I would still be ok. I was determined not to get on the freeway until I absolutely had to, so I decided to go directly east when I hit Norfolk, NE, and catch the I-29. When I got to Norfolk, I was having so much fun on the back roads that I decided just to stay there and ride them all the way in to Omaha. This decision cost quite a few temporal bucks, as I drove through intense traffic and stop and go signal lights finally to reach the interstate.
My own boss used to work in Omaha, so I decided to look up his old school and play a little joke on him. His school, of course, was registering new students, so I dropped in, took a photo and played like I was interviewing for a job there. This little side trip didn’t take long, but I was already behind.
From Omaha, I headed down the river in Iowa with all hopes of removing myself from the freeway as soon as possible. The Midwestern wind can be really hard on a windjockey such as myself, and I felt that I was hanging on to the bike for all I worth. I took the first opportunity afforded me, and hopped an only slightly more accommodating rt. 36 directly east across Missouri.
I’d given up hope of making it to St. Louis, but I thought maybe I could drop down and make it to Columbia, MO. Eventually, I realized that there was no reason to head due south toward Columbia, when I could ease my way east toward St. Louis if I rode all the way to Hannibal.
Darkness and chill befell me before such a goal could be accomplished, so I stopped at a State Park in Macon, just as the sun was setting and the nearly full moon began to rise over the lake. I found an ultra-dark, secluded campsite beneath a heavy tree canopy, and watched the moon rise over the lake. In fact, that’s where I am now, typing these words in the moonlight by the fire.