About Lea's Foundation

In 1998, Lea Michele Economos, a young woman who died of leukemia at the age of 28, made a dying wish to her parents that others would not face the hardships she encountered by finding a cure for this disease. Her family started this charity to carry on that wish. Today, Lea’s Foundation takes an active role in finding a cure for leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s lymphoma and myeloma and to better the lives of people living with these diseases. At the UCONN Health Center, the Lea’s Foundation Center for Hematologic Disorders sponsors research in this field. A new program covers the cost of bone-marrow testing to help recruit life-saving transplants for patients. Also, annual scholarships are given to children with leukemia who are planning to attend nursery school. For more information on other projects carried out by Lea’s Foundation, please visit their website at www.LeasFoundation.org.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Day 10: Hospitality in the Desert

Eureka--> Ely  (~70 mi.)

Upon hearing about a diner operated by local Mennonites just outside of Eureka's "city limits," Melina and I followed our Mennonite-sense--honed during our undergraduate years--and found the Pony Express. While we waited impatiently for our brekky to appear we looked at the prices for elk, hog, and cow on a white board just above an array of jams and salsas the family produced. Our food arrived and it was delicious--I even supplemented mine with a fresh, caramel-glazed donut.

We had a misleadingly difficult climb out of Eureka to start the day. The maps we use have an elevation chart for general guidance, but they must have misplaced Eureka a couple hundred feet southward of where it should reside. Further complicating the day was the inevitable wind. It simply cannot be anticipated or tolerated. It's hard for me to even type this as I grit my teeth recalling the wind's persistence in our ears. At many points during the day we expressed our desire, in so many words, for a room (or even a bubble) with no detectable wind. As we were playing scenes of Bubble Boy in our heads and starting to lean into the challenge of the last climb of the day, our heroes from yesterday surprised us. We knew that the brothers (Ed and Sam) were going to cut their trip short, but we weren't sure if we'd see them again. We certainly didn't anticipate their wonderful gift of cold Gatorades in the middle of the desert right before our hardest climb of the day. It was emotionally and physically refreshing to chat with them and it lifted us enough to pull through for the rest of the day. Many thanks to them for their friendship and kindness on the road.

Even with the brothers' boost, we crawled into Ely fairly late in the evening. The Main Motel graciously donated for a second year to Coast to Coast for a Cure and the local dinner spot, Racks, which came highly recommended, also donated a meal. The combination of those two excellent donations, along with the events earlier in the day, put us in a good place in the strange little town of Ely.

In the Pony Express we Trust,

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