One meets all kinds of people on a trip like this. It is one of the most stimulating and interesting developments. Phil suggested I write a little about some of these characters.
Some of these folks are "outliers"; people might make that comment about the members of our group, too.
There are two athletic studs from Tennessee, teachers and former college athletes, equipped to the "9's", who are going across the country on the same route. They leave us in their mirrors each day, but then the next day we encounter them again, no further along that we. Makes us wonder what they do after they pass us.
We spent two days riding with accomplished biker Robert, a 66 year old man from New Hampshire, his 19 year old daughter Kim who "rows" for Loyola of Maryland, and her friend Sarah who will begin her Junior year at Sarah Lawrence. What was especially remarkable is that the two young women had wiped out at high speed on a tight corner, but insisted on biking on despite Kim having the worst case of road rash I have ever seen and Sarah a broken finger. Sarah had never really ridden a road bike before, but had no problem keeping up with the group. Today they headed north toward Yellowstone.
Just before dark last night we met Rudy Van Prooyen, a native Netherlander who was seeking a place to camp or crash. We invited Rudy to join us at campsite and for breakfast this morning...a breakfast prepared by Phil, who has been such a "provider" for us along the whole route, through the whole experience. Rudy is an inveterate biker who travels the world raising funds for the cause of Blue Planet. Rudy left Bloomfield Hills, MI, first of May and is soloing across the country, pulling a trailer containing "his support".
Today we came upon a guy named Richard who is hiking across the country, deciding on this venture "after months of prayer", he said. He told me people call him "Rainbow", and he was dressed in the colors of a rainbow.
So there you have a verbal picture of some of the interesting people on the road.