Today was HOT! It was 102 degrees when we finished our ride. Thankfully, we have since cooled down and are comfortably enjoying the air conditioning.
We dedicated our ride to two people. Steven asked to have the ride dedicated to his aunt’s brother, Marino, who passed away from pancreatic cancer, as well as his aunt’s sister Diane who passed away from gall bladder cancer. Both of his aunts have been huge supporters of I4K!
We are all feeling good about finishing today. It was challenging for many reasons. The heat always makes the ride feel more difficult and challenges us mentally. On top of that, the road we rode on today went over and through mountains, had some construction, and the shoulder was covered in debris. We had to be very mentally and physically sharp in order to keep our teammates and ourselves safe. There were many, many flat tires today, which not only slows us down but also wears on our optimism. I am proud to say that we all encouraged each other and did what we needed to do to make it to Redding. An ice cream stop at McDonald’s helped!
The positive thing about today’s ride was the scenery. We rode through beautifully forested mountains and right over Lake Shasta. It was a gorgeous lake with bright blue water and a beautifully colored canyon.
The other, and most important, positive part about today was the generosity we received. We are staying at the First United Methodist Church in Redding. These people know how to throw a potluck! We had so much delicious food, talked to so many kind people, and received many donations. After dinner we had a Q & A session where they just asked us about what we do, what our favorite parts of the trip have been, what our daily routine is like, etc. Their interest and patience through this was amazing! It is always so nice when people are so genuinely interested not only in our cause, but also in us as individuals. We all had great dinner conversations with the people around us.
People like those we met tonight remind us of all of the good people we have met along the way. We continue to be thankful for the amazing acts of generosity we see.