An Addendum


Iíve been lucky to have done some really neat things in my life drive the Alaska Highway, hike Nepalís Annapurna Circuit, swim on Wake Island. And one thing has always been for sure: when you go on those kinds of adventures, you meet some remarkable people.
In February of 2010, I met a woman name Kim through watching a Space Shuttle launch from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. We formed a friendship and later began dating, where I learned that Kimís favorite activity was bicycle touring.
Thus, we decided to do a summer of 2011 bicycle tour together. In an effort to beat the oppressive heat of the southeastern United States, we chose to tour Wisconsin and Michigan.
On Wednesday, June twenty-ninth, Kim and I departed my home, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina and drove three days to Ludington, Michigan, which was to be the starting point of our adventure. The plan was to leave Kimís car in Ludington, and take our bicycles on the ferry across Lake Michigan to Manitowoc, Wisconsin. From there, we would pedal a clockwise loop through Wisconsin, Michiganís Upper Peninsula, and then Lower Michigan to return to her car.
The next morning, Kim and I were up at 5:52. Barely saying a word, we pulled off a masterful pack-up in the semi-darkness and were out the door in an hour. We ate breakfast at a downtown Cafť, and then we were dead-on time to make a 9:00 departure for the trip across Lake Michigan on the S.S. Badger. We debarked in Manitowoc at noon and pedaled north on the Mariner's Trail with Lake Michigan on our right side.
As Kim and I began pedaling through Wisconsin, we pondered the upcoming adventures that we would share. More importantly, we contemplated what people we would meet.
On Friday, August fifth, traveling on U.S. Route Thirty-one forced us into a construction zone just north of Elk Rapids, Michigan, where we had to pedal through dirt, gravel, mud, and puddles. Thus, we arrived into town tired, dirty, and hungry with no place to stay. I was at a Shell Station searching for a hose to clean our bikes when a man named Steve, who was pumping gas happened to ask about our trip. One thing led to another, and he offered us a tent spot at his summer rental right on Lake Michigan!
Kim and I pedaled only one-half of a mile to get there, where we hosed down our bicycles. Then we set up our tent on his back deck as a gentle breeze from Lake Michigan cooled us. We showered inside; after which, Kim fixed chicken-n-rice on her camp stove. Then we just sat and talked with Steve as he tried to unload his remaining wine on us.
In conclusion, this was the very first bicycle tour of my life. During the planning stages, everyone told me “Itís not the destination itís the journey.” However, I would like to make the following addendum: “Itís not the destination itís the people that you meet while on your journey.”

J Scanlan

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