Thursday, June 13, 2013

Mt Pleasant to West Memphis, Arkansas - Thursday June 13, 2013

The Litwiller’s are “On the Road Again”. 

After Cal rode his bike from the west coast to the east coast of the US in 2011, it was mentioned that he should ride from the Gulf to Canada.  This idea hibernated for a while!  Sometime this winter while discussing our adventures for 2013, the subject turned to “another bike ride”!  We thought about a biking trip in May & June, but then the opportunity arose for the trip to Nepal.  At least we felt it was an “opportunity”, as it is always special to visit a Rotary Project during the time of dedication. The Nepalese Rotarians made extensive plans for our time in Nepal, showing us their country.  Plus, an added incentive was that we could stop in Qatar to spend time with our daughter.  When you are traveling that far it is great to double up on destination!

So then, do we put this bike trip/adventure off until some other year, but as with everyone, we are not getting younger!  We considered doing the trip in June and part of July - it will definitely be a little hotter and Cal may have to ride shorter days.  Upon returning home after Nepal, we played “catch up” for the first while, and then we decided that by mid-June we could be ready to leave for another bike trip. 

            Packing for this trip was simpler than the last time.  We will not be camping, or be in isolated areas.  Also we will never be too far from a Wal-Mart!!

So this morning Thursday, June 13, 2013 we left home to drive to Grand Isle, LA.  This is at the end of the road in the Gulf.  Currently, for the night, we are outside of Memphis, TN. 

Bikers look at the topography of roads differently than drivers of vehicles. It is approximately 200 miles south of St Louis when the topography becomes very level – great for biking.  Today some farmers were harvesting wheat, while others were flooding their rice fields.  These rice “paddies”/ fields were so large compared to the terraced rice paddies we saw in Nepal.  For a long time I did not realize we grew white rice within the contiguous 48 States, but we definitely do.  I knew wild rice was grown in the lakes of Minnesota.

This afternoon we stopped for a while in the historical district of Cape Girardeau, Missouri – browsing in several antique shops – sorry to say we did not help their economy.  Cape Girardeau is right along the Mississippi River.   They are so glad they have a flood wall or their historical old town would have been under water.  The Mississippi River is high.     

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