Now that we're in Missouri, we've ventured into the Ozark mountains. We've been warned by various sources that they are quite a bit more work then one would think. That's always a hard warning to heed: should we think they're going to be really hard and then be relieved? think that they'll be easy to prove people wrong? To me, the warning can feel like telling someone to not sneeze too hard.
If that seems a little too psychologically invested in a recommendation, chalk it up to being on a bike and thinking about hills all day. For me, I found the Ozarks refreshing because they remind me a lot of riding at home: tons of undulations, no real rest, lots of shifting. I would liken the rollercoaster hills to driving a manual versus automatic transmission. It certainly gives you something more to pay attention to that can distract from a not as exciting landscape. But, if you're in traffic all day, it's miserable either way.
As the title suggests, the beast of Flat Tires reared its ugly head today. Previously, Melina had had two flats on consecutive days a while back. Since then, I had been daydreaming about making it across the country with no flats, or at least with my original tires and (patched) tubes. Today wrecked that dream as Sean and I both had at least two flats. It's not a terrible inconvenience, but it's a pain to be worrying about the possibility of a flat all day. It seems like there is a staple factory located along this road, or some careless kids in the backseat coming home from back to school shopping, or a phantom cyclist irritated at our quick pace. Or something.
After surmounting a huge climb into Camdentown (I think Melina said in frustration that "there better be a summit sign at the end of this"), we got into town. Dave's Hideaway, via Cliff, donated a room and gave us the lowdown on the local food.
Ozark sounds like a Seussian mountain range,
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.