Total Miles – 1,260
Today’s Travel Time – 10 hrs
Animal Totem – Hummingbird
What I learned today – Eating greasy food before riding a motorcycle on a gravel road is not a good idea.
After reassessing last night we woke with a new plan of 180 miles per day, traveling from 8:30am – 6:30pm (10hrs). Based on this, our goal for the day was to get just west of the Mississippi River. We pulled out of our lakeside campsite at 8:45, and got down the road at a good clip with a couple of short breaks.
It would have been if we had stopped eating after the milkshake and salad bar. Instead dad had catfish, Stefan had frog legs, and I had a half a grilled cheese washed down with a hush puppy and 2 bites of a giant onion ring.
I’m not kidding- I felt drunk after that meal. I was singing to myself and standing up in the saddle to stay alert! The one nice thing about the restaurant is that they had a bunch of hummingbird feeders hanging out front so I got to see lots of hummingbirds before I keeled over ☺️
Hummingbirds represent joy, and I really do feel joyful out here on the open road. Even though it has been grueling at times, the days have been long, the road ahead unpredictable, there has been an overwhelming sense of excitement and adventure, and a feeling of trust that everything is unfolding exactly as it should. I am learning something new, pushing my limits, spending time with people I love in places that are unbelievably beautiful. I have no idea wha tomorrow will bring, but I know whatever it is, it will be amazing. I am so grateful for every moment of this journey and for the fact that I had the courage to say YES to the ride!
After our post-lunch side-of-the-road nap we checked on the massive rainstorm that had been headed our way and realized that we needed to hightail it! We had about 35 miles to go until our next gas stop and we would be in the middle of nowhere until then- not a great place to be for a thunderstorm.
After making our way through dirt, gravel and some mud (I almost went down in a Mississippi mud puddle), we were about 5 miles out and could see the storm coming in. Stefan stopped to put on his rain gear, and a few moments later cold wind started whipping around our bikes and droplets began to fall.
After more assessing on the doppler radar we determined we had about an hour window to make it to West Helena before the biggest storm came in. Again, we hightailed it, opting to detour around the mud bogs this time. We rolled across the Mississippi River into Arkansas and arrived at the hotel literally 5 minutes before the lighting started.