East of Lexington to Charleston, W.V.

May 14, 2012 (East of Lexington to Charleston, W.V.)
  Today I said goodbye to David and Ashley.  Fortunately for me David works for Klove/Air1 where he provides maintenance on the radio stations towers.  So, he gave me some good advice as to which way to go.  Ultimately, I headed toward Charleston, WV which took me through Huntington, WV where Marshall University is.  It was cool to see the campus which is right in downtown.  Once again there were several Civil War and historical type markers along the way.  
  Unfortunately, the weather did not change as first expected.  It continued to rain, and by the time I got to Charleston I was pretty well soaked.  Fortunately my hotel had a laundry facility.  
  Before I left yesterday I was interviewed by the local Lexington news station, which I hope will bring in some more donations and prayers for Tim.  

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Happy Mothers Day

  Happy Mothers day to all you moms out there.  Today was a good day for a break, it has been raining non-stop, and hopefully will let up tomorrow.  I had a nice day with David and Ashley and we went to a great church service, then to some friends house for lunch.  
  I miss being home with my own family, but it was nice to be graciously invited to spend time with friends.  

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Bowling Green to Elizabethtown/Georgetown, KY

May 12, 2012 (Bowling Green to Elizabethtown/Georgetown, KY)
  Got an early start as usual today and made pretty good time.  I had 80 miles under my belt before noon.  It has been quite cloudy, and as a few people have mentioned at my pit stops, “It’s fixin’ to rain.”  So, once again I have been blessed to be able to take a day off with friends, and hopefully avoid the rain.  
  Today’s ride was pretty uneventful, although I stopped at two different stores/gas stations and had a “sausage biscuit.”  They had biscuits and gravy, but I wasn’t sure what problems that might cause further down the road.    
  So I am going to spend tonight and tomorrow with our friends David and Ashley.  After David picked me up we were able to check out a few things on the way to their house.  We saw the Kentucky Castle, and Keeneland which is the horse track in Lexington and the precursor to the Kentucky Derby.  I have to say Kentucky is beautiful.  
  I am looking forward to a day off tomorrow after having rode hard the last five days.  

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Calvert City to …Bowling Green, KY

May 11, 2012 (Calvert City to ….Bowling Green, KY)
  Well I started early again this morning and planned on going to Central City.  I soon found that my plans would change.  The scenery in Kentucky has to be the most beautiful I have seen so far.  The farms are pristine and each one looks like a park.  People obviously take pride in their homes and farms.  As I continued my journey this morning I noticed my rear tire seemed to be out of true about seven or eight miles from Princeton, KY.  Just as I rolled into town I noticed this fantastic smell of a bakery, it overwhelmed my senses and made we want to find the source.  However, I saw a Walmart and thought I should stop in and get a few things, so I did.  (Right across the street from the Walmart was a very large factory)  
  While in Walmart I started looking for my items and ran into the store manager, Alan Dixon.  It was about this time I realized I had a broken spoke on the rear wheel.  Alan did some research and found the closest bike shop was in Hopkinsville, which was about 40 miles south of us – not where I was going.  I did not want to ride the bike much further and seemed a little stuck, when Alan said he was going home to get his wife’s vehicle and he would be back to take me to the bike shop.  (Now that is customer service)  Alan returned and drove me to the bike shop, and before he said goodbye Alan took the time to pray with and over me.  It was a real blessing and overwhelming that he took the time to do what he did.  So, if you ever find yourself in Princeton, KY stop in and say hi to Alan.  He is a great family man with four children and obviously a man after God’s own heart.  
  So I took my bike into Bikes & More in Hopkinsville, KY and the guys, Jason, Dave, Bennie and Dustin immediately took care of me.  They were interested in my journey and got the wheel back in shape in about a half an hour.  As I went to pay, they wouldn’t take anything and said it was their contribution to the trip.  Once again, what a blessing, and what a great bunch of guys.  I have been in a lot of bike shops, and this shop is great!!  Stop in and see them if you make it down here some time.  
  After leaving the bike shop I entered into some Amish country.  The people were very friendly but did not want their photos taken.  One nice guy allowed me to park my bike next to his buggy for a photo.  I did catch a couple of guys as they approached down the street.  There was another young couple with a very new baby and when asked for a photo they declined, so I did not take a photo.  While in this area I found a monument for Jefferson Davis’ birthplace; he was the first and only president of the Confederate States of America.  
  So my route changed once again, and I was off to Bowling Green, KY.  It was a long ride, and quite a headwind, but I finally made it.  Tomorrow I am off to Elizabethtown to meet some more friends.  You can also see that I found a hotel near the Corvette Museum.

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Sikeston, MO to Calvert City, KY

May 10, 2012 (Sikeston, MO to Calvert City, KY)
  Today once again started out early as I wanted to get to Peducah, KY as soon as possible where I thought I would rest for the remainder of the day.  Well I got going and passed through some farmland in eastern Missouri then I noticed the farmland was getting much richer as I rode along a levee approaching the Mississippi River and Ohio River.  Then I saw the bridge that crosses the Mississippi and as you can see from the photos on facebook it was extremely narrow.  One big rig had to follow me for quite a while until he could get around me.  After crossing both rivers I entered into Kentucky.  Luckily I stopped for some chocolate milk and a treat in Wickliffe, KY and they give me directions toward Paducah, since I was planning on going the wrong way.  
  Kentucky is very beautiful and green.  I passed numerous farms where the corn was recently planted.  I eventually made it to Paducah and was waved over by a nice gentleman, Larry, who told me not to go the way I was.  He said the roads were too narrow and gave me directions to the bike shop I was looking for to replace my tires.  Larry is a bit older than me and he told me that he, his wife, and several friends were planning to take the same trip I am on next year.  We enjoyed a long conversation and Larry gave me his information so I could sell him my Adventure Cycling Maps when I get back home.  I then went off to the bike shop and replaced both of my tires.  I think it was a good idea since I have travelled about 1500 miles.  
  I have to share another story I neglected to share the other day.  Two days ago as I passed through a small town in Missouri I found a wallet on an onramp.  The wallet had a credit care, drivers license, and a few other important papers along with about $100.  The wallet belonged to Jerry from Maui Hawaii.  I figured he must be on vacation or in the military.  I had my good friend Lance do some research and he found a phone number for Jerry’s employer.  (Don’t ask me how he did that)  Ultimately, I spoke to Jerry on the phone as he was now in New Orleans.  To make a long story short he was visiting a friend and would be heading back to Springfield to fly home.  He was really excited to recover his driver’s license so he could get on the plane.  Jerry insisted I keep the money and buy myself a good dinner.  After some discussion about that I decided he would not change his mind.  The blessing:  I was able to pay for my new tires!  
  After leaving the bike shop I went to a McDonalds to get some lunch and a young man approached me.  He asked what Touring for Tim was all about.  I told him and he reached into his wallet and handed me all he had.  It wasn’t much, but I bet it was to him, which reminded me of the woman who gave all she had as an offering.  The young man took a photo with me and assured me he would be posting this on his facebook and getting people to donate.  Yea God!
  After a very unhealthy lunch I headed out for another 15 miles of riding to Calvert City.  Larry and the bike shop folks suggested I leave Paducah to avoid traffic in the morning.  So, I have now settled in and am planning tomorrows ride.  
  

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Van Buren to Sikeston, MO

May 9, 2012 (Van Buren to Miner, MO)
  I got up real early this morning and left Van Buren around 6 am.  It was rather interesting as there was a light fog hanging over the Ozarks.  After about 45 miles of up and down, I finally reached farmland again, which was fairly flat.  It was a long trek today, but I finally made it and settled in for a brief spa and rest.  
  I only saw three dead armadillos today, and a couple other animals.  I attached photos of the sunrise over the Ozarks and a little scenery.  I also took a photo of three little pieces of wire that punctured my rear tire.  Thanks be to God that I didn’t have to change the tube until I got to my hotel room.  I am thinking it might be time to change the rear tire, it is looking pretty warn.  

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Springfield area to Van Buren, MO

  Well it was time to say good-bye to the Young’s.  It was tough to leave the comfort of their wonderful home and go back on the road.  I can’t thank Lance and Cynthia enough for their kindness and hospitality.  It was a great visit and time to rest.  I am going to miss them!!  God Bless you guys for the love and blessing you bestowed upon me.       
  The weather is really good as it is partly cloudy and only about 70 degrees.  The trip today was a lot of up and down, as you can see from the one photo of the road.  I have entered the Ozarks and as you saw in southern Missouri and Arkansas there are some interesting signs at times.    
  In another photo you see some cows in a pond.  I don’t know the deal but the cows in Missouri seem to like to wade through their ponds.  Keeping with the animal theme I don’t understand how every 2-300 yards there can be another dead animal on the road.  Without exaggerating I saw at least 100 to 200 dead armadillos today.  In addition to the armadillos I saw multiple snakes, frogs, turtles, turkey vultures, cats, coyotes, foxes, skunks, squirrels, and various birds.  I hope I have seen the last of them, the smell is a little overpowering.  
  The gentleman at my hotel said I only have about another 20 miles or so of hills till I hit some flat land again.  I don’t mind the up and down, but some of the ups have been quite steep.  Incidentally, the BBQ is really good here in Missouri, as one might expect.  I had some good St. Louis Ribs tonight.   

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On the Road Again

Well, I am heading out once again today. I was blessed once again by another bicycle shop, Cycles Unlimited in Springfield, MO, as they are going over the bike to check it out for me. They are also adding bar ends for me because my left hand ring and pinky finger are getting numb during the day.
I have also been blessed by Performance Bike in Virginia Beach, VA as they are going to ship my bike home for me once I arrive at my destination.
I am also going to bid farewell to Lance and Cynthia and “Otto and Maddi.” They have been such a blessing and amazing hosts. I feel much better after the rest, and the wonderful massage. (Cynthia is a therapist)

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Saddlebrooke at the Young’s

May 6, 2012 Hanging with the Youngs
  Today was a great day.  I woke up in a nice comfortable bed and had a fantastic breakfast.  Cynthia had yogurt with homemade granola, fresh squeezed juice and coffee.  After a little breakfast we drove south about 35 miles just into Arkansas to attend church at Harvest Assembly in Oak Grove, Arkansas.  It was a true Pentecostal church service, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  
  After church we went to lunch with Lance’s daughter, Kristi, her husband Earl, and their two daughters at a buffet at Morningside where Pastor Jim Bakker records his current ministry show.  We all had a good time.  After lunch we made a quick run to Branson, but the clouds came in and it started to rain so we returned home to relax and have a nice dinner.  
  As you can see from the photos there are some interesting signs here in the south.  

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East of Wichita to Saddlebrooke, MO

May 6, 2012 East of Wichita to Saddlebrooke, MO
  After passing through Wichita I had decided it was time for a little break and my brother W. Lance “The Chimp” Young and his lovely wife Cynthia took me home like a wayward lost child.  Lance is also retired from Roseville PD and we were on the SWAT team together for years, including three years where Lance and I were part of the “Sniper Team.”  (You are never an ex-sniper, just former)  Lance got the name “The Chimp” while we were at Grass Valley Swat Competition and on the RAT (Rural Assault Trail) Course we were all on a platform and told we needed to get a team member to a tree that was about 10 feet away.  Well, Lance ran the 6 feet of the platform and flew through the air and latched onto the tree like a flying monkey, hence “The Chimp.”  
  So this morning I woke up in this absolutely beautiful place.  I was able to get my coffee and sit on the front porch and read my bible as the weather was fantastic as well.  I will get to go to church for the first time in three weeks and am looking forward to it.  I will follow up with further info and stories as we spend some quality time together.  
  The one house in the photo off in the distance on the hill is Lance’s neighbor and former CEO of a major corporation.

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