Day 49: Nickerson to Larned

Yesterday in Nickerson, as I was working on my bicycling website at the library a lady invited me to the community center for dinner at 6 PM. I said sure! I guess I do have some good luck.

The librarian had a family emergency so she closed the library at 5 PM. I bought a bag of potato chips at the local grocery store to snack on before the dinner. While sitting on the bench, I saw a mom and her three children walked by. They were going to the dinner at the community center, too. So I joined them.

There were about 20 people at the community center. The mom's name is Sherri. I mainly talked with her. At 6 PM, dinner was served. It was a potluck. I had some enchiladas, a variety of salads, and some deviled eggs. The food was really good!

Community members at the potluck, with Sherri on the right

Soon after the potluck, rain started to pour. I hurriedly rode my bike back to the pavilion. After setting up my tent, I noticed the rain had stopped. Then around 8:30 PM, it started to pour again. This time much more. I moved my tent closer to the center of the pavilion since water was coming in. Luckily, it stopped short of my tent.

This morning, I had a SEC bagel, along with a cup of coffee, at the convenience store in Nickerson. Then I started riding out west. I hit 2000 miles on the odometer but the actual total distance is about 2050 miles. The bike computer malfunctioned a few times.

Camel spotting in Kansas

Hit 2000 miles on the odometer

I rode about 30 miles until I came upon a church on the side of the road. It was about 11 AM and I haven't seen a restaurant, a café, or a convenience store. There was a spigot on the front yard of the church so I got some water and made two bags of ramen noodles. It was only the second time I used the stove. I also ate some trail mix I had bought in Chanute. It wasn't the best meal, but at least I have more energy to ride another 28 miles to Larned.

Ramen for lunch

Entering Larned, I saw large white cylinders as tall as some large apartment buildings. I've seen them before in Buhler and Nickerson. Later at the library, I found out they are for storing grain.

More oil rigs

Pro-life/anti-choice signs spotted

Entering Larned

The first thing I did in Larned was to report to the police station. My map had indicated a park where I can camp, but I needed to talk to the police first. The police lady gave me a form to fill out and gave me a map for the location of the park. She asked me what I was riding for. I told her I'm not riding for any charities, but riding for myself. I guess a more concrete answer would be riding for mental health because it takes mental strength, as well as physical strength, to cycle across the country.

I rode several more blocks north and stopped by Wendy's for a vanilla frosty before coming back in town to the library to write this blog post. I plan on getting some dinner soon then camp at the park. Today is the first time I felt some significant headwind. My phone showed a 7 to 8 mph wind from the west the whole day.

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