it was the last day. the day nobody wants to see. slow starts, bike repairs, cold sodas. we didn't want to leave but we had to- back to the daily grind. it's hard to say goodby to a bunch of guys that you've grown closer to on the road. We split in to 2 packs at the freeway: the MKE boys, and the chicago crew. They were supposed to take er easy cause brians replacement belt wasn't quite sitting right and he needed to take it slow to get home.
that didn't last. not even 10 miles later i see brian in my rear view. he's rolling nice and steady catching up at a relaxed pace with the rest of the guys not far behind.... seems its harder than we thought to break up the group.
the belt decided that it was going to turn itself into a super trick 1/2" wide belt the hard way about 30 miles from MKE. Eugene peg-legged him to the next gas stop where warren would be bringing him the last belt that would get him to chicago. I didn't want to, but Brad, Ratchet and i split leaving the rest there and getting me back home to my truck in case it was needed.
I nearly fell over from exhaustion the second i walked in the front door of my place. 1000 miles never felt so good and so short. It was 4 days i will never forget with a bunch of guys i now hold dear to me. Many a good time spent on the road, in the grass at gas stations, in parking lots, at campgrounds... theres but one thing i can think i would have changed....
I can't thank the chicago boys enough for asking me to come along on this one. Brian, i'm grateful for being invited on something you guys hold so dear to your hearts- I now see why. Eugene, I can't thank you enough for making this financially possible. and for convincing me to get down there. i was upset i wasn't gonna be able to make it, but you were so quick to tell me that you wouldn't let me miss it because of money- i thank you genuinely. I was gonna go down the list of everyone but there were so many instances of kindness that i'm grateful for that i would be here well after my lunchbreak ended. So to anyone that offered up a sandwich, cup of coffee, tank of gas, parts, tools, zip-ties, anything... i truly thank you.
Oh, and thanks to the Country Mile III sponsors: Miller High Life, and Thin Lizzy.