May 11 - 19: Kansas

5/12 - Pittsburg (LAYOVER 1396 total)
there was lots of lying around going on during our layover day. it was a very breezy day, painfully reminiscent of yesterday, & quite muggy. by afternoon the temps had dropped & by evening the sky is clearing & the winds have subsided. looks good for our 61-mile ride tomorrow to chanute, kansas.
during the day some went to movies across the street at the mall, darleene tried to get some card games going (don't know if she ever succeeded), & some were more industrious.
judith, for instance, as you can see in the photo, donned her elbow-high rubber gloves & gave her bike a thorough cleaning.
later in the day she walked across to the mall & found a hair-cutting place; she returned with a smashing new do. you'll get to see it in a photo some day soon.
another popular activity on layover days is cleaning out the bags....overnight bags, bike bags, camping bags. patty fainer is relatively new to the group, having joined us a week ago in chester, but today she already had put together a big box of things gleaned from her bags that she'll send back home. many of us went through the ol' sending-home-the-superfluous-stuff stage some time ago.
here's a photo of patty with stuff spread all over her bed & the box that'll go back home.
she's also the proud new owner of a pocketmailer; her husband found & sent her one. she's been busy today learning how to use it. there are several other pocketmailers in our group so she'll get plenty of coaching.
2-3 times during the day, a fellow from the bike shop (the owner, in fact) made several trips out to our motel with the bikes that his mechanic had finished working on. we had all expected to have to go back downtown to pick them up. for several of the bikes--the ones that required just a looking over & minor adjustments--they charged us nothing, not even for labor.
here's a photo of the folks at Bicycle Adventures in pittsburg, kansas: from left it's LeRoy, "the king" of mechanics, & pattie & danny jones, the owners. they're at 109 E. Rose in pittsburg.
when i went down to their shop late this afternoon to take this picture, the mechanic was bushed. he'd had a long & hard day taking care of all of us, not to mention their usual friday traffic. for the things he didn't have the supplies to fix, he's made a list of what's needed for the bike shop at pueblo & will fax it to them so they can have on hand what we need for further adjustments when we lay over there in 10 days. that shop went waaaaay out of its way to help us. the people couldn't possibly be nicer or more accommodating.
7 of our group went to an asian restaurant for supper tonight that the bike mechanic had highly recommended. my roommate, judy, said it was VERY good food, the atmosphere was extremely pleasant, & the cook & his wife did all they could to make sure everyone was well cared for. it's called the asian place & it's on east 4th in pittsburg.
after i got a picture at the bike store i walked back to the motel...a couple miles or so. i stopped at a frozen custard place for a chocolate concoction, then walked on out to the mall across from the motel for a couple of things, then to the motel. we all need to get organized tonight so we can be ready for breakfast by 5:30 & on the road not much after 6. people around here tell us that those infamous kansas winds pick up around noon, so we'd like to have most of tomorrow's miles behind us by then.
Higher quality versions of the pictures from my trip are available here. If you would like copies of the original, full-size photos, or if you would like text-only versions of these daily reports e-mailed to you, feel free to e-mail my son Mark with your request. Stay tuned....

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