Day Eight


We rallied in the morning like cold molasses. We were stiff and tired. We had pushed too hard on the previous days and now we faced the dreaded ‘bonk’. It took great effort to get started. We slowly packed our bags and returned to the road. The sense of joy had faded to a general sense of fatigue that wasn’t going away quickly. Our first decision of the day was to quit. Not the ride, but the day. We had about thirty miles to ride to Ogallala. We decided early that we would get a room there, shower and lounge about for the rest of the day.

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A slow moving train would take a half hour to pass

The actual riding was nice. The winds were not favorable, but didn’t blow too hard. The road was wide, smooth and with a generous berm. We pedaled for several hours never getting into the zone. We could only count down the miles to Ogallala. We pulled into town in the mid afternoon. The motels were near the I-80. We pedaled through town towards the freeway and found the Best Western. To our delight they had a hot tub. Austin immediately headed for the hot water and soaked for an extended period of time. We watched T.V. and vegged until the evening.

We didn’t have to look too long to find a restaurant. Across the street was a Mexican restaurant. That was perfect. The only question was; how good could Mex be in Nebraska? The answer was; OK. It wasn’t great, but it was tasty enough to fill our tanks. Now sated we retired for a good night of sleep. The safety and security of the motel helped to send us deep into the realm of the sandman.

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The scenery would not change for several hundred miles

Our total for the day was a whopping thirty miles. However we had pedaled several hundred miles into our trip. We knew we would have to find a sustainable level of effort to propel us towards our goals. Though we were dead tired on this day we didn’t despair. We knew this was part of the mix. We would have to take rest days from time to time. What we didn’t know was they would be few and far between.

The math still told us that we would have to pedal as hard as possible to gain any advantage to the day/mile issue. Things in general were going well on this first week of our effort. We had developed a rhythm and each day was interesting, unique and full of quality time, even though we pedaled alone on remote roads and rarely talked to anyone. We were well on our way to completing the first of our three goals. That goal was the little, hard to find on the map town of Winside NE. This was the first stop in America for the Senior Pops of the Striedieck Clan. Werner Striedieck stepped off of the boat at Ellis Island, boarded a train and traveled for several days across the country before finding his way to the Carl Wolf harness and shoe repair shop.

Though tired we had done well with our diet, our regime and pace. We decided early on to not cook any meals but to buy food at the deli’s which were available in every town. We ate bagels with avocado and cheese, raw cabbage and kibbles (sesame sticks) with raw garlic, one of our favorites. Dinner was often potato salad and Cole slaw. We ate tapioca pudding and yogurt. We had trouble finding ‘real’ beer once our of the Boulder area. The shelves stocked only the worst piss-water beer available in America. It was Bud, Bud Lite, Coors, Silver Bullets and Miller Genuine Draft (?). The one beer that we consistently found was a beer named Fat Tire. Its logo sported a bicycle and it tasted good, especially after a long day of riding towards Stormstown, PA.

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Austin sports the 'Nebraska' look