HWY 83 - Day 7 - Warmin' the soul
Woke to a sky looking like it was filled to the brim with water. Stopped to have a McCafe and study the Nebraska map before leaving McCook. First sip of coffee. Heard the familiar "Where are you headed?". A very special thing about the folks in Nebraska. They don't know a stranger. In less than a minute Don was sitting across the table from me chatting away as if we were close old buds who were just gettin' caught up a bit. Born and raised in McCook, Don was a helicopter pilot in Nam, used the GI Bill to study dentistry, opened a practice in McCook, married his high school sweetheart, has a daughter who is following in his footsteps and taking over his practice of 40 years. "Just work two days a week now. Kinda retired, not really. Don't know what I would do if I couldn't go into the office at least twice a week." Started to get a good history lesson. "This area around here at one time had both the tall grass prairie and the short grass prairie. Grasses were 8 feet tall on the tall grass prairies and 3 -4 feet tall on the short grass prairie. Over 2 million buffalo roamed the prairies right here in McCook. Proud history." It was a good conversation. A real conversation. Enjoyed the time chatting with Don the dentist.
83 north from McCook is a beautiful two lane running over the Sand Hills of Nebraska. Today low overcast, fog, light mist, light rain, then it rained harder than I have ever ridden in before. Ever.
Even through rain and fog the beauty and tranquility of the Sand Hills surrounded me. Rained so hard didn't have to stop for a drink of water all day. Just licked my lips and swallowed. Figured got my 8 glasses easy.
Pulled over and walked to the top of a hill. The horizon melted into the landscape. Trees blended softly with the grasses. Sky gently kissed the earth. Didn't matter if it was raining. Didn't matter if my goggles were filled with water on the inside. Took a special moment to stop and give thanks to Mother Earth for all the beauty she provides for us.
Dryin' out tonight in Valentine, NE. Everything is wet. That's only the physical stuff. My soul was warmed and filled with the beauty of the day.
Kickstand down Valentine, NE. 220 wet miles.
be strong, be safe, Carlan