A Monologue with the Æther

A Bicycle Odyssey

Day Thirty-six: Friday 3 August 1990

Moraine View State Recreation Area, LeRoy, IL to Sycamore Motor Lodge, Havana, IL

The two things that stand out in my memory of this day are a late afternoon thunder storm which I rode out by sheltering at an abandoned service station. The other is the two French men. Maybe 30 or so minutes before the storm, I spot two riders coming from the opposite direction. We all slow and shout across the highway. One of the men spoke English albeit with a thick accent. We shared origin points and destination points. They started in San Francisco, CA and were heading to New York City, NY. Eventually, the spokesman asked about my intended route through the west. I told him that I planned to follow the North Platte River into Wyoming and the Snake River through Idaho. I asked what route they had followed. He answered that they had ridden through Nevada and Utah, following up with an observation that those states were “VERY HOT! VERY DRY!”. We laughed and said good-byes and good lucks because we could see the thunderheads to the west.

I roll into Havana, IL in the late afternoon and find the Sycamore Motor Lodge. The rooms are clean and cheap and the owners are quite nice. I am staying here for the weekend as it is time to do laundry and pick up a general delivery from the post office.