Woke up at 5:15 in Popeye town. In order to make our rest day hotel in 2 biking days, I knew we needed to get on the road early, no dilly-dallying today. Jacob was ready really quickly!
We decided to eat breakfast at Hardees since we needed to use the restroom facilities there (FOE had been closed since 1a).
We crossed the mighty Mississippi river early in the morning. “MO miles, no MO problems” was our supposed M.O. of the day. Jinx…this was a big time jinx.
There was a road closure at a bridge. We decided that there was just no way of getting around it without our bikes drowning in mud and water. So we backtracked and took a gravel road for about a three mile detour loop. I fell, some blood, definitely sweat, but no tears…I hate gravel!
We made it back to the 76 trail and paved roads. When we got to some hills, Jacob’s bike wouldn’t shift correctly. We stopped multiple times for him to tweak it. Finally he discovered that the skewer was installed incorrectly by the guy at the bike shop the previous day. Lots of cuss words happened. He jimmied it and we climbed to the next bike shop in Farmington MO where he fixed it for real.
We stopped at McDonalds around 5p. We were still 30 miles from our desired end point… planned to camp at the city park in Centerville MO (free for cyclists). We considered going only 15 miles instead and hitting up the Black River Motel. Jacob called to see if they had a room available and to check rates for non smoking, two beds. When he hung up the phone Jacob imitated the motel guy’s gruff, scruffy, low and loud voice: “non smoking is still smoking….they do what they want here…$55…but if you use a card it’s $5 more…hmmmph”. Then, in a fet-up-Jacob unusually high voice “I’d rather camp at a city park!!! I’d be afraid of that dude”. This made me laugh hysterically…
So we got to biking. 20 really fast down-mountain miles. We apparently had been climbing UP all day and this was the reward.
10 miles up and down to beat the sun to Centerville.
Most motorists so far on this journey have been polite and courteous. Not so on this road. It was the beginning of labor day weekend, Friday evening, and we were between the motorists (with their big trucks, RVs, trailers with boats and ATVs etc) and their holiday destination of campsites. One lady screamed nastily at me “You need to find a new road!” (this is a documented bike route). When she passed Jacob she honked and tried to run him off the road. Jacob may have yelled something with the words “fat” and “cow” in it. I can’t be sure exactly.
We just barely beat the sun to Centerville. David Robinson, who we met at the market, showed us where to camp. The admiral’s brother (he wasn’t really THAT David Robinson but I thought it was funny!) gave us a few beers and we set up the tent to keep mosquitoes and dew off us.
We ate cans of ravioli and a can of vegetables for dinner. One biking day left to a REST day. I think I can!