My fine hosts, Richard and Robbyn. I wanna move into their basement.

Miles:  108

Total Elevation Gain (ft):  1525.7

Weather: Mostly Sunny, Mild

Hillbilly Insults: 0

Roadkill: 44 (6 Birds, 3 Possum, 3 Frogs, 3 Turtles, 8 Raccoons, 21 Unknown)

Bugs Swallowed: 1

Mean Dogs Chasing: 0

Animal Rescue: 0

The carnage on the road continues.  

Central Michigan's rodents don't fare well along county roads.  Too much forest, too many cars.  As I pass the twisted remains of someone's furry mom or dad, I say a little prayer for each one of them and smell their evaporating essence.  This got me thinking about the olfactory menu drummed up by the pavement day after day. 

Crazy lady feeding the fowl in Bay City, MI. She seemed normal until she started telling me the name of every one of these birds and their progeny, unseen in the photo.

Here's a list, in order of prevalence, of the stuff I've been smelling over the past seven weeks:

-Good quality hay curing in the mow. 

-Freshly turned rich soil. 

-Liquid manure slurry from factory hogs. 

-Steaming cattle manure. 

-Rain on hot asphalt. 

-Sweet putridity of rotting animal flesh. 

-Dank sweat soaked cycling jerseys. 

-Viscous perspiration and sunscreen resin. 

-Faint Pine Sol and bleach from long ago filthy toilet cleaning


-Urine turned syrup in filthy truck stop restrooms. 

There's more, I'm certain, but these are smells etched in my memory. 

Maddox, showing me how much cooler his shark helmet is compared to mine.

Pretty flat ride on roads with decent shoulders.  I was getting close to Detroit and arranged a visit with my friend Richard and his family.  It was a wise choice.  These people are the most pleasant hosts. They gave me the VIP treatment in their well appointed home. It was an absolute contrast to the Hanoi Hilton I "slept" in a couple of days ago.

After a heavenly shower in an apartment sized bathroom, Rich and Robbyn fed me a steak. Maddox, their charming son, gave me a tour of the toy collection--A bright kid, he should be a plastic dinosaur docent.  Even the dog, Dudley, showed me some love after he warmed up. 

My mother-in-law accommodations were fit for a spoiled Saudi Prince.  I secretly hoped that it would rain so that is be "trapped" here a while. The gods smiled upon me as the thunder clapped late into the night.

I'm fond of this picture because it was important for Maddox to suit up for me. He's got shoulder pads, helmet and a mouthguard, yet he's so tough he plays in flip flops. I think the Rainbow Warriors at UH will be calling soon.


Carol Moore
07/25/2013 6:46pm

Jon, so happy that you enjoyed your visit with Rich, Robbyn & Maddox. How about the "Moore Suite" in the basement?

Jonathan Leahey
07/25/2013 7:24pm

Carol, Part 2 of my visit comes in the next post. It was a fabulous visit.


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