|Another grind it out day with a little rain, so I suit up accordingly and get back to the slab slaying.|
|Nothing magical today - I90 to Sioux Falls, hang and right on I29 to Kansas City, then I435 bypass to a little bit of I70 then the motel - little over 700 miles. I should be there before dark and then I have short day tomorrow back to the Holler.|
|Through the rain, I see a hole in the sky and I think how much it is like life. It may be dark all around us but the Lord will make a 'hole in the sky' for His Children.|
|I have forgotten that this is Wall Drug territory that I finally stopped at back in 2013. It is really good but with the Covid craziness I figure they may not be open and I don't want to waste a lot of time today.|
|But as you travel I90 you see one Wall Drug sign ...|
|after another one ...|
|after another one ...|
|after another one until ...|
|you come to your 'Last Chance' exit. But this morning I decide that I will just pass up my last chance and keep rolling along.|
|The sun is trying to break through the clouds ...|
|and it finally, as always, is successful - and for that I am thankful.|
|I remember this village that was originally constructed as an old western town for a movie set. Some one took it over and turned into a place to 'see'.|
|The heat is starting to bear down and breakfast is way over due, so I find a Pilot Travel Center that has a Subway.|
|Their breakfast sandwiches are not bad, and the chocolate milk and donuts help with the whole process.|
|Once I'm back to the slab slaying, I run into another construction zone.|
|But soon I escape it and get back out into the open of the green, rolling hills.|
|There's an interesting railroad bridge off to my right.|
|And further along, I see an old prairie church still standing.|
|These windmills look like evil alien insectoids to me peeking over the horizon with their arms flailing about.|
|Further down the road I see an old fashioned version which sure seems a lot more benign to me and again almost artistic in its construction.|
|Finally I made the turn and I'm on I29 and headed due south.|
|The corn crop seem to be doing well here and I hope that is a good thing for the farmers. Farming is a very difficult way to earn a living, considering I had a lot of experience with it in my younger days. There's seldom a day off and the weather can make or break you.|
|As I pass by these things, I have to chuckle. I'm sure the municipality spent great sums of money to have these garish constructions of metal erected as art.|
|Then there's art that I understand - a water tower that looks like a coffee pot to advertise a travel center. At least this art is functional as well as being ornamental.|
|Finally I cross the last state line of the day and I am really looking forward to getting off the road at a reasonable hour.|
|But as it sometimes happens, the vulgarities of the road change a man's plans. All of a sudden, my throttle no longer works and the bike is just idling. I am in the middle of nowhere Missouri and nowhere to pull off safely. The thought occurs to me if I put on the choke (which is technically a fuel enricher), I may can get the bike to continue on at some sort of speed. I can get about 35 mph out of her until I come to hill so I keep my four way flashers on. It still amazes me how many times I have to run off the interstate because drivers are not paying attention. There's a town about 20 miles away so hopefully I can limp along to a safe spot there for the evening.|
But, I come to a single lane construction zone and know that if I go into that, some inattentive driver will run right up my exhaust pipe as I will not have a place to get out of the way. Fortunately they've got a whole lane blocked off and it is in the shade of a hillside. So I come to a halt and figure I'd better see what I've got. I call the motel and tell them -
"I am broke down on the side of the road. I don't know if I will be 2 hours or 2 days so please cancel my room."
I don't want to get hit with a motel room charge that I ain't gonna use on top of whatever this little adventure will cost. I know it has to be a throttle cable that has broken, but I can't imagine the Honda ones breaking as thick as they are. So I strip the bike down til I can get a good view. It turns out it is the cruise control throttle cable that has snapped. That's fixable as I can remove the cruise control cable unit - but there's just one problem. It requires that I remove the gas tank from the bike and it has quite a bit of fuel in it. There is no other way after several minutes of trying various options. So out it comes, out comes the cruise control cable unit and I hook the original throttle cable back in place. It appears to be working fine now, so I reassemble things and she fires back up and we are ready to go.
|This whole little 'adventure' has taken about 2-3 hours but I decide I will head for my original motel. I figure I have a better chance of getting a room there than anywhere else since I did have a reservation originally.|
I finally arrive, pull into the lot and go inside. I tell the lady behind the counter -
"Ma'am, I'm the feller that called a while back, broken down on the interstate, and canceled my room. Anything you can do for me?"
She says -
"Sure thing. I gave your room to a older lady, but I can get you into another one."
She gets me all set up and I thank her very much as I did not look forward to trying to find a room at this late hour.
|With that business done, I see a gas station across the road and a Hardee's still open across the highway. I get Bluebell fed, then proceed to get fuel for myself. The Hardee's lady gets me a good plastic bag with handles so I can ferry my supper back across the highway. It's the bed/table again but I am just thankful to be in a room and not stuck on the side of the interstate waiting for a wrecker.|
|I am physically, emotionally and mentally exhausted so it takes about a New York minute for me to collapse into a comatose heap after supper. But as I will see tomorrow, there are even more challenges ahead.|