TRIP 2003

Update #33 - August 10th
Veedersburg, Indiana - 6739 miles (10,782 KM)

Another state line was crossed yesterday (the 18th for the year). I crossed into Indiana around 10:30 a.m. (C.T.Z. (Central Time Zone). This should have been the crossing into the Eastern Time Zone but it didn't happen since Indiana doesn't follow Daylight Savings Time. I will not get into the Eastern Time Zone until I cross the Ohio State Line.

There isn't much to say about the short ride from Niantic, Illinois to Veedersburg, Indiana. It was great to visit with my pastor friend at the Methodist Church in Niantic. I have known Rev. Jim for about six years. I had thought that I wouldn't see him at the church this year because he was trying for a transfer since his daughter graduated from high school. He had been with the church in Niantic for about ten years or so. Jim was asked to stay on for a year since his district didn't have a minister in place to take on the church. Before leaving Thursday morning, Jim surprised me by slipping me $40.

Thursday's ride (August 07th) took me through Decatur to Tuscola. Around 5 p.m., I stopped at the sheriff station in Tuscola to see if I could get connected with a local minister. Coming into town, the area got a soaking from a rain shower and the ground would have been too damp for me to put up my tent. The ministerial association was contacted and a room at one of the local motels was offered instead of an invitation to stay in one of the churches. This was greatly appreciated.

The next day (August 8th) was a long day of over sixty miles to Oakwood. I arrived in Oakwood around 4:30 a.m. The small police station was closed and there was nobody at the local churches. I happened to find one of the churches with the parsonage next door. The minister and his wife I found out was out for a motorcycle ride. One of the minister's neighbors invited me over for a hot meal. John needed some company. He was in a bad motorcycle accident back in April and it messed up his right leg bad. He was going to start back to work on a limited basis Monday. I was surprised that he slipped me $10.

While I was eating, the minister of the Christian church came home. Instead of letting me stay in the church for the night, I was invited to stay in the parsonage. Rev. Mike was getting ready to move to the Kansas City, MO area to a new church. I had a good night that included a trip to Danville for a thick strawberry milkshake. In the morning, I was a bit surprised when I got slipped $35 and a couple of new t-shirts.

Yesterday (August 09th), I had a short (34 mile ride) from Oakwood, Illinois to Veedersburg, Indiana. I've made either five or six stops so far at the Church of the Nazarene during the past ten years. I've become good friends with the pastor and his wife. Rev. Ed has always told me that I have to stop by if I'm in the area or I would be in trouble. Rev. Ed is a neat guy. Next year, he will celebrate fifty years in the ministry. He told me that he was thinking about retirement but I told him that people in the ministry don't really retire. They just get re-directed.

This morning, I slept in late for me (around 8 a.m.). I usually wake up between 5 or 6 a.m. It is good to have a day off the road for a change. My last day off was July 12th in Colorado Springs, Colorado nearly 1,300 miles ago.

The morning church service was okay. Even though the congregation is around three dozen people, they have a big heart. I was a little surprised when Rev. Ed said that he would like to take up a "Love Offering" for me. It came to just over $60.

This was greatly appreciated since I need a few things for the road. I need to put aside some money to buy a new front tire within the next 800 miles. I usually can safely get a little over 2,000 miles on the front tire. During lunch, I told Rev. Ed that during the last four days I received monetary donations that exceeded the totals for both June and July. After the evening service, I received another $20.

Tomorrow, I will be heading out to the Covington, Kentucky area (just across the Ohio River from Cincinatti, Ohio). I'll be visiting a friend who has a ministry that has him taking Cross Walks in Northern Kentucky and Southern Ohio. I should be with him next weekend.

I was going to be riding to Ft. Wayne, Indiana but it a little out of the way from where I am and off the shortest route to Covington, Kentucky. I will be riding through Indianapolis, Indiana. My last time through was back in August of 1993. From Covington, Kentucky, I will possibly recrossing the Ohio River back into Ohio and maybe following the River up to Huntington, West Virginia. My next major stop after Covington, Kentucky would be Charleston, W. Virginia.

I do want to share a unique observation. I have been quite surprised and puzzled that during this year's ride as I travel through all of the towns (big and little) I see very little activity of children outside. I had thought that kids would want to take advantage of playing outside instead of being cooped up inside as they are while in school but the backyards, parks, and playgrounds were nearly empty. Occasionally, I saw few children at local swimming pools.

The most activity that I saw of kids playing outside was in Lodge Grass, Montana on the Indian Reservation. Over two-dozen Indian boys were having a great time riding around town on their horses. I guess modern day children are too spoiled with air-conditioning, video games, computers, and the internet. Maybe that is the reason why there is a serious problem with obesity in the youth of today.

I'll try to post an update as often as I can if there are any changes in my plans.



Bicyclist in Sunset



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