Bike Adventure Blog

By Kert Emperado

FAST
Canadian, Texas to Liberal, Kansas that is.  Today was different in many ways.  For one,  I was in the van for some Desitin therapy (get it?), while my fellow riders pedalled through the fastest 90+ miles of this cross-country trip so far, averaging 20-25 mph through mostly farm and oil wells country.  It was beautiful!  I have to admit, I was wishing that I was out there sharing the experience.  Afterall, this was ideal cycling conditions.  In fact, some of our riders were going so fast, they missed our big Fuller Center van&trailer to refuel on the best rest stop food and drink...ever!  Never the less, all smiles all around as every rider made it to the Central Christian Church of Liberal City in record time.  Entering the city and at a red light, we noticed what looked like one of those bronze painted street entertainers in full character, not even flinching from the bright sun and blustering breeze.  Poor thing, there were hardly any pedestrians onthe streets, in this pickup-trucks kinda town, to give her some change.  Turns out, it was only a statue of Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz.  And the town has many Dorothy's scatterred about.  We have just arrived in Kansas. 
 
IN THE VAN
Being in the van today was a good change for me, as well as my co-vanners, Tom aka geezerman, Melissa (trip leader), Nadine (drag racer, photographer, and former best rest stop deli owner ;), and Midas (international intern, photographer), from the Netherlands.  Tom, 71 years young is also not used to riding in the van.  All of 2012, Tom put in an excess of 7000 miles on his pink beauty.  Melissa, our  very organized and dedicated (volunteer) trip leader needed some time off the bike to rest a bit.  I'm sure she'll be back on her new saddle and shoes tomorrow.  Go Melissa!  Midas and Nadine had a chance to stop 'fighting' like siblings with other people around.  Just kidding you two.
 
REFLECTION
 At first it was strange to be part of the support crew rather than being a rider.  But, I really enjoyed experiencing this side of the adventure.  Seeing the riders off at sunrise was so exciting.  They were all in bike shorts and bright orange jerseys.  So professional looking!  Passing the riders as they gave a wave or thumbs up, and seeing them pedal their hearts out for this mission to help provide adequate housing for the needy was really moving to me!  At the 20 mile rest stops, everyone was pumped and raved about the gorgeous weather and beneficial tale wind.  Hundreds of pb&j sandwiches were already eaten througout the first three weeks, but the riders still love 'em.  Let's try adding turkey slices to the mix. Doritos, yes as well.  Melissa and I were the deli operators and chefs, while Nadine and Midas, snapped yet another bunch of new memorable pictures. They are a great team! Tom, was our biggest cheerleader and inspiration.  As riders arrived at the rest stop, he clapped and gave them words of encouragement, and even offered to park their bikes.  Did I tell you he is 71!? Go Tom!  
 
In between all our hard rest stop duties, we entertained ourselves with tractors, pigs, crawfish pockets, saddle jokes, and the occassional 'serious' conversation.  

 
Great and Pizzaful day!!!  Special thanks to Chris Krall, a fellow Pennsylvanian, who fed the entire team with assorted pizzas that should last for a lifetime.  And he did that from Scranton.  (Hint Hint family and friends ;)

 

By Alex Goldsmith
Well folks, here we are, in Weatherford, Oklahoma.  It was, as usual, sad to leave the place that had become temporary home but after two nights with a pillow and comfy sheets we had to leave for fear of becoming soft.

After a quick breakfast we were out the door (okay we are still working on making it quick, but you get what I mean).  On our way out we ran into a group of motorcyclists who were also touring the country so we challenged them to a race.  They hung out at the hotel for at least another hour and still beat us.  Our fearless trip leader led a devotional about how our God is not in any hurry and neither should we.  Our lives our always busy and this trip is a great opportunity and reminder that there are more important things in life.  We should slow down and admire the things that God has placed all around us.

After our final goodbyes to Oklahoma City we saddled up for the first long haul in two days and our rested tushes rejoiced to be reacquainted with their long-lost companion known as the bike seat.

We worked our way mostly west today.  Passing through Reno, Oklahoma we made it onto the world famous Route 66.

The continuous rolling hills and headwind during our 73-mile journey was a great way to embrace the daily devotion of taking it slow.  We had no other choice.  Well that goes for me anyway, there are always those speedy fellahs up front that seem to be unaffected by any element that could be thrown at them.  We worked our way down the historic road and into Weatherford.  Our temporary place of residence is The South West Oklahoma State University campus or better known as SWOSU.  Another night with beds!!!  We are truly blessed on this trip.  It is now time for this tired boy to hit the hay.  On behalf of all The Fuller Center riders, thank you for reading, and thank you for your continued support and prayers.


P.S.

 

I miss you Tom Tebbe.  

 

P.P.S

 

Scott Harrison, if you are reading this, it is time to drink up.  It’s accumulative.

By Ben Coughenour