Woke up a bit groggy, but feeling good and ready to ride. I had a great time last night but I was feeling no ill effects from it. We got packed up fairly quickly and were ready to ride. We said our good byes to Michael, thanked him for dinner, drinks, and a good time and hit the road.
We got around the detour and made a stop for breakfast. While we were stored Jr noticed his rear tire was done. It was pretty much worn through. He debated riding until it fully gave, but after discussion decided it wasn’t going to make it far and better to just change it now.
Back on the road the riding was easy. Weather was perfect and miles rolled by. It would be a very nostalgic day for me. We were taking Rt 26 all the way across Indiana. I drove that route countless times in college, first when I was at Ball State doing my under grad making weekend trips to visit friends at Purdue, and then when I was at Purdue working on my Master’s to visit friends at Ball State. Lot of good memories.
Wasn’t long though before we hit our second detour. Again this didn’t take us very far out of the way, but my home state want being very welcoming. However, it didn’t put us on a very quiet and pretty road that was quite enjoyable to ride on.
Eventually though we found ourselves back on Rt 26 and rolling into Fairmount, In, home of James Dean and Garfield. As we came into town we passed a guy on a recumbent bike coming out of his drive and said hi. Continued on into town looking for a place to eat since it was lunch time.
We found a Mexican restaurant and pulled into the parking lot. As we did so we came across another guy on bike (road bike with aero bars). We stop and chat with him and are soon joined by the guy on the recumbent bike. Both start asking about our ride, and we have a nice long conversation with them both. They leave and we go in to get lunch.
While we were eating, the guy on the recumbent bike comes back. He comes in and we start talking again. We had both given him our cards and he was asking questions about our charities, and why we picked them. Had a great time talking to him.
Shortly after he left we finished eating and went to pay our bill. That is when we found out that the guy on the recumbent bike had paid for our meals. As he was leaving he paid for us, and never have us a clue he was doing so. We never got to thank him, but greatly appreciate his generosity and won’t forget him.
Late afternoon we crossed I69 and saw the sign pointing way to my hometown of Ft Wayne. As we continued on we passed about 10 miles north of Muncie, IN and Ball State. Would loved to have hit the Chug (is it still around?) for a beer and seen the campus, but wasn’t in the cards. Was within a few miles of both my alma maters on the day and didn’t see either one.
As afternoon progressed toward evening we started thinking about where we were going to stop for the night. Before we came to a decision fate stepped in. I had a flat. And like Jr earlier in the day, I found that my tire was done with its journey.
As we were stopped on the side of the road changing my tire, the property owner came out to check on us. Ron had a son who was a cyclist and triathlete, and had recently bought him a bike. He asked if we needed any help and we had a great talk with him. One thing lead to another and next thing you know we are setting up our tents in his yard. He and his wife, Carolyn, let us shower in their house, and fed us dinner. We had a great evening talking with them. Absolutely wonderful people.
We would have loved to have loved to keep talking with them, but the days ride finally caught up to us, and we had to call it a night. I think we both slept sounder though knowing we were safely sleeping with land owners permission.