Day 44

Excelsior, MN to Northfield, MN
$2 :: snacks
61.82 mi :: 5.10 hr :: 31.9mph :: 11.9 mph :: 3346 mi

Took a chance & slept w/o the tent. Had a few mosquitoes but slept pretty well. Began my navigations after another good hot BF. For a while lots of turns made it interesting – 19 to 7 to 41 S. Towns light industrial, suburb, & offices. One farm town, Carlton. Then back into more farm country on 40 & 45. Tempted at Jordan to eat something from McDonald’s, but held out. My next road was closed, so I gave up going to New Prague and made a route around. Getting hungry, at a burrito while riding S on 13. Got upset on my last road, 19, because traffic made me ride in the gravel too often. Stopped at Lonsdale for a snack, thinking I’d reach Northfield by 11:30. Better shoulder after that, I watched a stunt pilot loop and spin playfully in the sky in front of me for quite some time. The little biplane seemed to be an extension of someone’s intricate imagination. I remembered doing a barrel roll in Washington & wondered what all those dives & flips felt like inside the plane. My own vehicle started feeling squirelly, and I realized I had another flat tire. I took some time fixing it & addressed a few other needs on the bike.

Finally rolled into Northfield about 1 PM. Rachel spotted me the second I rolled up to the house. It wasn’t long before the bags were off the bike and kids were on, directing tours around the neighborhood. Had a shower, and delicious eggs, fruit, cereal, & just-out-of-the-oven coffeecake. Yum!

I then recorded a good long conversation about family w/ David, while Martha & Rachel played w/ friends. Noticed both David & Annemarie avoid talking about each other.

More bike rides. Martha has a penchant for tactlessness, saying things like, “You stink.” “You’re too skinny,” “Your mom smokes,” etc., etc. Rachel is quieter except in her opposition to homework & school.

I do some internet work.

Dinner: vegetarian chili, rice, fresh sweet corn, and some of the best apple pie I’ve ever had. Mary does the dishes, shares cooking, is not overly affected by compliments, never complains, joins in the conversation when all else is taken care of. I admit I enjoy the hospitality & I hope she knows I appreciate it.

Read & sleep very well, thundershowers outside.

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