Day 40

Farewell, Good Friend!

Posted by Conner McCormick on 2016-06-29
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Ride Date: 2016-06-29
Starting Location: Walnut, KS
Ending Location: Pittsburg, KS
Miles: 30
Lowest Elevation: 902
Highest Elevation: 1017

Joop and I got up around 7 and made a quick but delicious breakfast and were out on the road before 8. The other two bikers also left around the same time as us though they were heading West instead of East. We all wished each other a safe trip and headed our seperate directions.

The church we stayed at. You can see the cyclist couple in the back left of the picture

Today was a very short day of riding for me. We made it into Pittsburg, KS by 10 AM and went to the new coffee shop in town. We each got some coffee and a cinnamon roll and enjoyed our last moments together since Joop would be continuing on, and I would be staying in Pittsburg for the night since I needed to slow my trip down so I wouldn't be in Springfield too early.

After enjoying our coffees, Joop and I said our goodbyes. We hope to see each other again towards the end of the trip, though this will require me to work really hard to catch back up! Because it was still so early I decided to go to the library to kill some time before heading to John's house (my host in Pittsburg). There actually weren't any WarmShowers hosts in Pittsburg, but Karim - my host back in Saratoga on day 22 - used to live in Pittsburg and gave me the contact information for his friend John who was very happy to help me out. I still can't believe how incredibly helpful and selfless Karim is to all of us cyclists. Even when we're hundreds of miles away he still makes an effort to make our trips more comfortable.

After a bit in the library, John had me come meet him at his house at noon. I arrived and met him and his son Emerson. He was very happy to be helping me and I could instantly tell that I was going to enjoy my stay. I was given a quick tour of the house and showed where I would be staying - in the basement which was basically like a man cave! John and Emerson had to get back to work so they left me to settle in and get comfortable. I took a shower to clean off then just relaxed and did a little work on a website project while I waited for them to return home.

Around 5 John and his son returned home, then went to the grocery store to get some food for the night. While they were getting groceries I met their Korean exchange student Chen, who has been living with them for about a year. He is on a completely different sleep schedule than the rest of us! While John was prepping the dinner his wife Sherry came home and I introduced myself to her as well. Their whole family was so easy going and fun to talk to!

We enjoyed a very nice BBQ chicken dinner and some nice conversation around the table. Chen thanked me for my presence, saying that I was the reason for such a nice dinner. He jokingly begged me to stay for another night so he could have a nice feast again. For the rest of the night the family and I just kind of hung around talking. John, Chen and I drank some beers and John also had me try some of his friend's homemade peach moonshine which was dangerously delicious. I really enjoyed my time with the Elkins family. They were so welcoming and friendly and I really felt at home while I was with them.

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