Day 43 6/29- Short day for winds and a weird bike shop

Day 43 6/29- Short day for winds and a weird bike shop

6/29 day 43

Hutchinson to Newton ks

33 miles

Leaving nice hostels is always hard. Leaving nice places to fight the wind is even harder. This was one of those days. Jeff made an enormous spread for breakfast – fried eggs, toast, bacon. There was pineapple juice. I did dishes and then we left the oasis that was the church. Into the wind.

Which of course was blowing straight at us. Hard. And then it threw a little water at us too. Ugh. We stopped at a gas station and debated rain gear or windbreakers, because between the wind and the rain and the fact the sun hadn’t come out yet, my nipples were hard enough to cut diamonds. Im sure the ice cream I ate at the gas station didn’t help. But again we pushed on.

If you haven’t noticed, there’s a theme here. We keep going on and on and on because we sorta have to. Rain? We bike. Heat? Bring extra water and bike (maybe siesta to avoid the worst…). Wind? Put your head down and pedal. Bike into anything.

We got to Newton after a grueling 3 and a half hours. Considering we didn’t leave until after 10am it meant that it was 2pm or so when we wandered into the Newton Bike Shop. We’d heard from westbound cyclists that the hostel was really nice and that they had an awesome stock of ice cream. They were right on several counts but not all.

The shop itself was spotless. There was one last lone TransAm racer getting his bike worked on by the mechanic and there was… no conversation. It was weird. I felt like I was in a museum. Everything was “don’t touch this display piece” feel to it. The lady owner was walking around with a dustpan and broom cleaning up and just stared. Trying to make small talk was…. Painful. We asked about the hostel and got a quick run around. Apparently a few westbound riders got to stay before the racers showed up, and then the racers all stayed. And then they started doing renovations I guess? It was a little weird all around. Especially because we were reading maps in the store and we got pretty much told to get moving.

Like I said. It felt weird. I dunno. I went and hung out at the library for a bit and then moseyed to the park. Set up the tent. And battened down the hatches for the storm tonight.

2 Replies to “Day 43 6/29- Short day for winds and a weird bike shop”

  1. Sounds like an unrewarding experience at the bike shop. Maybe they were having a bad day. Also, I didn’t see any WarHeads or Sour Patch Kid candy in that stash. Hmmmm.

  2. MT and MT both right. Something odd going on, and they WERE having a bad day. This on the website now: “This message is to let each local and touring customer know that we are choosing to be temporarily closed. We will not be taking in service, selling parts or hosting touring cyclists until we have decided exactly how we want to proceed with our mission here in Newton. When we have decided how we will restructure, we will make an announcement at that time. We are continuing to finish bicycles already in for service and will schedule pick up times with each customer. We ask that you respect our decision to take a break and make some personal decisions.

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