Day 73: Orlandia

Today Christina Su dedicated the ride to a group she ate dinner with last night, five of who were cancer survivors.

This morning we had a mostly successful departure as we started to roll out at around 6:30 after our 4:45 wake up along with breakfast served to us by the UMCers. Although it was another hot day, we missed the worst of the heat as we pushed the rest stops to mile 28 and 53. It seemed like the terrain today was something that you would expect to see in Africa, from the cacti and yellow fields. 68 miles felt very easy and since we had barely any climbing today was pretty easy.

We arrived at yet another Methodist Church at around 1:00 and headed over to the local pool that had a Sandlot feel to it with painted blue walls and tall diving boards. We got major Cali vibes from the people there and we noticed that every single lifeguard was bleach blonde. Since Orland is a pretty small town when 25 of us rolled up at the pool we got asked if we were a swim team.  There was an inflatable obstacle course that we had competitions on, and some of the local kids even joined in to compete against us.

We have begun to notice that Methodist churches are the ones that usually provide us with potluck dinners and we were treated to roast beef, rice, rolls, and a plethora of salads. Pretty much all of us helped ourselves to seconds.

Although i4prom was supposed to take place tonight, since we decided to have another early wake up tomorrow we cancelled it. Since we are staying at a very tiny church tomorrow it is not looking like the dance will actually take place. Stay tuned.

We are all coming to the realization that we only have three more days of riding and it is STRANGE. In a way it seems like this new lifestyle that we have adopted will go on forever. Sleeping in a normal bed will be weird.

Tomorrow is supposed to be a hard day. Probably the hardest we have left.

Gulp.

MB

 

Comments (2)
  • Charles Su says:

    For each member of this wonderful Illini-4000 team! You are almost there, but be alert. CS

    「Almost there」
    From Chicago union station, you left, with Illini orange shirts.
    I wonder if your parents still think you are just little birds.
    You room is spacious, your bed is soft,
    But this long summer, home becomes all of a sudden so quite.
    Listen to nothing, except for cicada sing.

    You roll out of the Time Square from the Empire state,
    And after seventy six days and nights,
    You will ride on the Golden Gate Bridge on the very west.
    That memorable moment has been in your dream,
    With four thousand miles, two wheels and the singular aim.

    It will witness your sweats and feeling,
    It will let us remember that fighting cancer is like endless biking.
    There are ups and downs, and twists and turns,
    There are plenty of thunders and pouring rains.
    There are head winds, cuts and scars,
    There are camping under the stars.

    You get your courage from patients,
    Dedicated in the morning and recalled at the most difficult parts.
    You chat with each other about cows and churches,
    A good ways to forget about tiredness.

    So many impossible hills are behind you,
    Some many hosts are ahead of you.
    Strangers, why are you so kind and nice,
    We are just a bunch of stinky college kids.

    As tired as I am,
    I cannot afford not to note down the ways I just came.
    Those moments, things and more,
    Take me to my usual snore with the bodily sore.

    Wake up is ahead of six slightly,
    When everyone gets up not willingly.
    Have something to eat and listen to instructions,
    Roads and stops need to be paid attention.

    Dedication is clear and real,
    Chanting in a circle after a morning meal.
    Groups roll out one by one, in morning lights,
    Orange shirts are pretty and bright.

    Tetons and Hood are tall and pretty,
    But the climbing part is usually a kind of ugly.
    Rivers and lakes are great,
    Especially if we get to jump in them on that day.
    The smell of pines makes scenery more scenic,
    That flavor is the most organic.

    But one thing that we can seal into an envelope,
    That would be sibling like relationship we have developed.

    You will return with a few flat tires and some broken shoelaces,
    Together with a lot to embrace.
    You spent all this energy, it is because
    The same that touches so many who fight for the same cause.

    「写在到达之前」
    你们走了,
    和着
    芝加哥
    联合车站的笛哨。
    你们这群
    父母膝下的
    儿女娇小,
    他们眼里
    叽叽喳喳的
    小鸟。
    你们的房间,
    仿佛还留着
    活泼的嬉笑。
    这漫长的盛夏,
    家中突然变得
    静悄悄。
    只听得
    窗外树上
    鸣叫的知了。
    你们从纽约市
    时代广场出发,
    经过七十六日后,
    自行车队
    将驶过
    期待已久的
    三番金门大桥。
    那值得纪念的时刻,
    将见证
    四千余英里,
    两只车轮,
    与一个目标。
    见证你们淌下的汗,
    让人们记住吧,
    与癌症的争斗,
    还犹如车行
    千里遥遥。
    多少起伏折转,
    多少雷雨潇潇,
    多少顶风逆境,
    多少露宿星照。
    你们从患者那
    把坚持的力量得到,
    你们与队友
    边骑边聊,
    努力去忘却疲劳。
    无数不可逾越的
    山坡被降诏,
    无数迎接你们的朋友,
    令你足足地感动到。
    素不相识的人啊,
    你为什么对我这么好。
    尽管疲惫不堪,
    还是让我记下
    这难忘的一天,
    记下曲折颠簸的道。
    过去的时刻,
    令我好好思考,
    直到那
    久违的熟觉。
    六点不到,
    队长便吹起床号,
    吃点东西,
    布置当天的
    路线事要。
    庄严的呈献仪式,
    有力的宣誓口号。
    于是各个小分队,
    又在晨光中,
    出发有条。
    翻过了白雪山高,
    领略了天湖冷俏,
    闻尽了松香满梢,
    也结下了
    兄弟姐妹般的情操。
    你们回来了,
    带着由衷的欢笑,
    在金门桥下拥抱。
    你们的意义,
    将会感动
    许许多多的同胞。

  • frontpage frontpage says:

    Thank you for this!

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