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July 25


Wednesday, July 25 †††††††Birch Run, MI ††to Port Huron, MI††††††89 miles


†††† Relief! It finally came.We got up this morning and I was so cool most of us wanted a light jacket on.What a welcome change this is.I donít think Iíve put on a jacket because of a cool morning since Jackson Hole, Wyoming.It was cloudy all day and just five miles from Port Huron it started to rain very lightly.Not enough that I needed to pull out my rain gear.It felt good actually.It had been so hot for so many moons that the rain was a joy.


†††† I arrived by 1:00 here and just afterwards it really started coming down.Most of the riderswho have been arriving all afternoon are really soaked. Iím sure the farmers are glad today.Yesterday, especially I couldnít help feeling so sorry for the farmers because of how terrible the crops looked.It down right depressed me riding along seeing such dry, parched, shriveled-up fields of corn, soy beans and sugar beets.All the lawns were completely brown.But now today the closer we came to Lake Huron the better the crops look and here in town yards looked better too.


†††† We all voted Michigan number one for crappy roads. These motorists around here from Ludington to Port Huron must keep car alignment shops very busy. The roads we came in on were either super nice or just the opposite and the majority of the miles were ridden on the bad ones.Minnesota comes in a close second.†† Tonight weíre all checking for loose nuts and bolts in our brains, I mean on our bikes.


†††† This Holiday Inn Express has the neatest thing.Right in the lobby area is a room called ďbusiness CenterĒ.It has a computer, printers, everything all free for the guest to use.I could check my e-mail. Yippee!Thanks everyone for your notes.Also I was able to check my web site too.Glad to see Nick is getting my journal entries on in Paulís absence.Thanks son!


†††† All morning on my ride today in my heart and thoughts were those attending the funeral of, my Mother-in-law, Leone.It was hard to be out there trying to stay upright on my bike (on those gosh awful roads) and at the same time pray for those who needed to get through their difficult day.


†††† Today Mike and Barbara Munk joined the crew.Doug Torosian will be leaving us for a few days when we get to Niagara Falls, NY.†† Mike will take over Dougís duties as leader while he is gone.Actually, Doug is going to go catch up with another ABB ride that is crossing the USA on a different route.That group is about a week ahead of us and Doug will be with them as they finish in Boston.


†††† I am getting somewhat familiar with the person who appears in my mirror.Back in Fond Du Lac, Wisconsin I popped into a beauty salon thatI saw across from the hotel.Hair was getting a little bit shaggy and it had been easy keeping it short during this trip.†† Makes it easier since we sweat so much and want a quick and easy hair do to wash and dry fast after our dayís ride.So I walked in and said just follow the lines of the hair cut I have now Ė trim it a little.†† Holy Cow!I had to ask her if it was really me when I looked it the mirror after the lady finished with the scissors.Short isnít the word for it.Scalped is more like it.It dries so fast now I donít even have to usea hair dryer!I might have to wear a name tag when Paul looks for me on Saturday when he comes to Niagara Falls to see me.


†††† I was just about ready to report Michigan a snake-free state.But I saw on the road two of the ugliest snakes of the whole trip Ė right here on an ugly Michigan road.One was this dark brown-blackish thing with white rings.The other , Padre Jim told me , was a Copper Head snake.Now I tell you it was the biggest, fattest, longest snake yet. I am just so lucky someone or something has smashed them before I had to ride my bike around them!Oh Canada save me from these creepy reptiles.


†††† And tomorrow we continue our journey across North America by cycling into Canada for a few days. The road signs will be in kilometers (metric).I hope I donít get lost. Speaking of lost, today I went two miles out of the way.I should have turned left, but went right before waking up. My first clue was the road was too smooth, I knew I was on the wrong road.


†††† Time to hit the roll-a-way.My turn for that bed tonight.††


†††† Thank you for your prayers.I thank God everyday for this wonderful experience I am enjoying on my two wheeled, open-air vehicle.