I don’t even awaken until 830am – I’m usually 10 miles in by this time, then I realize I was now back into the eastern time zone (if that’s not time travel, I don’t know what is!). Still it’s a later start nonetheless, but I finally get out and get moving. All hail the return of the mighty tail wind! Damnit it mean it – ALL HAIL! This is the first true tailwind of my ride and tailwinds generally mean three things: 1) there’s no head wind, 2) I get a little boost during the inclines and a little break on declines, and 3) my blog is clearly titled appropriately. It’s a strong tail wind too, about 18 mph steady with gusts up to 40 mph out of the WNW – and I’m headed To The East, Blackwards (shout out to X-Clan; not on the playlist… yet). I’m making great time, but damn I can feel it every once in a while when the route turns back on itself.
Route 62 is a lot of up and down, up and down; a bit less maintained; and has zero shoulder. But traffic is light outside of towns and most everyone is patient until they can safely pass. Some dudes working on the toad give me the bull horns and I can make out one dude mouthing the words, “fuck yeah”. One ass hat of a motorist give me the 8 second long horn as she passes. I wonder what she’s so pissed at, since I clearly can’t move over any more. Maybe she just hates bicycles or tents or tattoos. Or herself. I conclude it’s the last one, so I wave at her as she burns away more dinosaurs, speeding further into her own depressed existence.
I’ve gotta let y’all in on a little secret. A high fructose pipeline has been constructed throughout Trumpistan. There is no more “corn belt”. It’s no longer just Iowa and Nebraska – every state I’ve seen is now pumping disease onto each and every one of our dinner tables, all in the name of maximum corporate profit. This isn’t your 4th of July corn on the cob, microwave popcorn or cream corn casseroles. No that’s the storied last of good old American agricultural awesomeness. This is processed sweeteners, cheap cattle feed and ethanol. This is government subsidized big business that inefficient at feeding citizens but costs taxpayers out the ass. It’s massive and it ain’t going anywhere soon. The only thing we can do is put our money where our mouth is, so do what you can to only purchase products that do not contain high fructose corn syrup. You’ll be doing yourself and others a big favor.
Back on the trail, the winds increase and start to swirl, making some of these turns and inclines increasingly difficult. I can feel the day before’s century still aching my body and so I start taking lots more breaks. This bridge was the best one, not only did it shake a little bit ever time a motor vehicle roared by, but it came with its own caption. The last two hours of my journey are through horse country. I mean wealthy, win-the-Preakness, we got acreage kinda horse country. This is the wealth I never see. These folks live in an entire other world, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing – they actually have workers weed wacking every single fence post – and there must be tens of thousands on just the 10 miles stretch I’m on. The grass isn’t even that high. Must be nice to have it like that. Still, the roads were smooth and quiet and the scenery was amazing, so it was a welcome change of pace from Route 62, which I had been on for hours. Thanks super rich old white guys.
Plus its route 1977, so it much be fantastic right? The wind keeps beating me up as I turn to the north and they are now hitting me from the side and at times from the front. I decide against camping in this and grab another cheap motel room. I’m getting soft. This is one is pretty nice and cheaper than the last. They even have ice and coffee… and there’s an authentic taco truck out front! I grab 5 tacos, nom nom nom, and it’s light out before the sun even sets.