Since yesterday’s ride was cut short on account of Wizard of Oz like conditions, I had some making up to do today. I rode 97.45 miles in the scorching heat down Highway 96 (for those of you who love maps). Fortunately, I am now in the heart of farmlands (vs. the vast empty Great Plains of the last few days) so I was entertained by small farm towns, huge farm equipment, fields of wheat, corn, and alfalfa, life on the farm, and lots of dead things on the road.
We met Nancy at the Pharmacy in Dighton, a small town of 1,500 people. She has been a Pharmacy Technician for 9 years, filling prescriptions. And what she loves about her job is the people – the people she works with as well as the people she serves every day. She loves helping them understand their medications and contribute to their overall health. Her boss Marilyn, who was approvingly eavesdropping, influences her success by giving Nancy free reign to interact with and serve the pharmacy’s customers.
For 8 years now Elaine has been hosting cyclists who want to camp on her farm on their way through Kansas. We had the distinct pleasure of being her guests tonight, using her shower, parking the RV on her farm, cooking out on our mini-grill, and enjoying s’mores. Elaine has met many interesting people since opening Elaine’s Bicycle Oasis. What she loves about her job is helping people meet their goals on their cycling trips.
- Enormous feedlots (where cows are held, fed, and then shipped off to slaughter)
- Wind turbines of the Central Plains Wind Project (Utah and Nevada could learn a few lessons from Kansas on how to leverage unused land and wind!)
- 3 oversized trucks each hauling an arm of a wind turbine
- Crop insurance billboard (who knew!?)
- 2 women each driving an enormous combine down the highway (Thelma & Louise?)
- Oil drilling machines peppered throughout the wheatfields outside of Ness City
- A rock-decorated car (because…?)
Day 32 miles: 97.45
Total mileage: 2,001.89
Day 32 ascent: 827 ft
Total interviews: 52
Road kill count: 291
(added 46 today, including 11 more snakes, 4 more skunks, 2 pheasants (new to the list), 1 badger (new to the list), and lots of smushed, unrecognizable stuff)
Destination for Day 33: Larned, Kansas (a.k.a., middle of nowhere)