First Up, Daren @ Rose from St
James Evangelical Church Vacation Bible School New Haven Mo. I have recovered the remains of your aerial
"note in a bottle" released on July 6, 2010.
Balloon recovery site information ( 009 18-JUL-10 9:59:14AM
N38.69341 W91.29220 502 ft )
I have removed the debris aka...litter and will return to you. Your Message was read aloud in raised voice on the trail Sunday morning after picking it up, obviously this message was sent to us after the awesome and powerful display of weather that baptized our souls for the krushing of our day ahead and surely we sinned for poaching a nights sleep on the picnic tables in the city park.
Your Message "Broadcast the Good News!", "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." 1 Tim. 1:15
The sign in the incredible photo was noted only a short distance east of the downed location, should you go in search of this spot. PS...that darkness was 9:30 am....
On to moar incredible news. TTM and Sasha , got our selves a nice weekend. Musta been luck. Friday consisted of a quiet day at the office...thanks to Mgmt vacations....then home. I twisted Sasha's arm to go out for the evening...we never go out to eat...save for the monthly trip to Ralphs place to catch the Brown Dog Blues Band in action. Seriously, get yo' butt on over there and catch some fine blues talent on the stage. Hell the BDBB don't even suck that bad. So it's story time, we managed to get out of the house with out a real destination, other than we did not want to spend $60 on sushi at our favorite place Sushi Sen of Lake St. Louis. So...now what? We do love our Sushi, so...I decided to just drive and found our way over to
Kitaro. Hibachi! That's the ticket, right? I found out that Sasha had never entered such a crazy establishment where they cook in front of you. So we saddled up to a grill, next to another lovely whale sized couple had beached themselves...Really diet Soda...Go out all out and splurge once
for the real thing....ugghh.. Of course we chat briefly to hear that well....they mumble and of course they put off an aire about them since we mentioned never dining here prior. "regulars" they were...lol So we order up some drinks ...real manly like...Mai tai's and Jack on the rocks...for the life of me I can't see why she won't drink the fufu drinks with me...Slurp...gone...next...I love the koolaid drinks. next up, Mojito...it kinda sucked. Finally we get to order some food. We went with chicken and steak...and tried to order an eel and avacado roll...apparently writing things
down or remembering is difficult for someone in a waitress position...we never saw the roll. Diners at the grill to our right were getting a treat and we cheered loudly for the asian appearing chef...Our chef rolls in and guess what. We get the "black guy". He Sucked! When Wendy commented on the acrobatic talents of the shrimp on the far grill, his response was, "Yeah, but his food sucks". dude it all sucks...we came for the entertainment. Psst Better off goin to Ralphs! Foods better, and even with out the BDBB there will be entertainment....if your lucky Lewis Greenberg will stop in for a lively chat. So Kitaro...thumbs down. We bailed on this joint and hit up the warehouse of drink stores, Friar Tucks. Bourbon was on order. We needed another bottle to stash in the garden for the moments of chillaxation. Whiskey in a dirty bottle pulled from under a rock in a garden has a way of adjusting ones outlook for the moment.
We considered hitting up Masa's or Blue Sky for a cocktail, but a few miles into the drive home...Kitaro's revenge was upon us. I will filter this piece. Safe at home and recovered we
decide to enjoy a nice stash the bottle moment. so...are you still with me...this is Friday evening around 10:30PM. It gets better. Wendy points out a glowing balloon like object floating
overhead. This think looked like a burner on a balloon all fired up. It was aobut 150' in the air and moving in a Northerly direction at steady speed...it was pretty quick. Not a sound was heard as it floated over, as it passed the desire to apply my coyote like reflexes kicked in, and howls were made. The UFO floated on about a half mile then went out. I think it was possibly one of
those Japanese lantern things that fly after being lit. Either way I think it was a sign. We both fell asleep in the garden chairs til the skeeters woke us. We seem to doze off quite often in those
I awoke early Saturday morning and created coffee strong enough to handle Woodford Reserve, grabbed a bagel and headed for the garden. Sunrise is awesome out there. Wendy arrived shortly. I suggested the coffee needed a little help so the bourbon came out, when she accepted the notion I knew, we were in the midst of a "TrAiL MoNsTeR" session. We sat out there til around half past ten. The sun hammers the garden seating after that and if you stay...you better sunscreen...We hatched a plan to take the bikes and ride out the Marthasville to see my old
buddy Ben Franklin. (Picture at Augusta Brewery)
He's been working on their new home
so they can get the hell out of
Arkansas and back to civilization...well
at least out of Arkansas. Marthasville from our home should be around 35
miles....I think. A few hour ride. We packed our Hennessey hammocks, a jug or so of water and a Honey stinger. I figured we would just buy whatever we needed. It's not like this is the Middlefork on the OT.
We had some bike chores to handle, you know gettin the right rolly tires on the gearing tight. Wendy would take her Connor and I the MahJOR One. Singlespeeds baby! 38x17 for her and 42X18 for me. Time to get our mash on. We headed out and rolled our way to QT and the bank, gotta have some cash money to Trail Monster properly. Traffic suggested we take a back route and we hit Stump road and then on over to Bates. PS...roadies...when Bates is done...man what a nice long hill. We continued on into Swinghaven for a short shout out to Jason Pryor whom has taken up residence in Gunshow Buskin's old place. So we busted him doin' the dishes in an apron. Good to see marriage is training him well. LOL. If only he we strong enough, he would have tagged along. Maybe next time. We hit the Katy via Technology Blvd and Research Park. It wasn't long before we called time out for a hydration break. We need beer. We attempted to purchase Ice Cold PBR's in Defiance, however, Terry N Kathy's (biker Bar) is not worthy of such a fine beverage, we settled for the worst Stag in a bottle ever. given the Beer quality and visual talent was lacking, a plan to keep moving was in order. Do you think you could follow this grand leader on an overnight unscripted bike packing trip?
Word from Fort Franklin was that the painting crew would be leaving Marthasville in an
hournhalf...it's 5:30PM..."Well we are headed to Augusta Brewery, why don't ya meet us there for a beer." We enjoyed very over priced food and beer, another $60 bucks. Ben did show and we had a great chat and hope to have many more after they get moved back. Good Luck Kelly, Bailey and Shady!
Two and a half hours later...7PM we decide to roll on out of Augusta, I think at this point is where the grand leader was maybe overly medicated or under Gogi berried. I say we can be in Herman by 9:30. It will barely be dark, perfect for city park camping. After a few more stops I was starting to sober and stated on moar than one occassion, "Baby I am sorry I had know idea this trip would require this much effort." she would just laugh at me.... Damn who woulda thought a gravel ride of 65 miles while drinking adult beverages would require such a physical effort. We made to McKittrick about 10:45PM. My light had a dead battery from the point it was
first needed. Good thing Wendy's light worked. The Katy trail has skunks, possums, and loads of frogs after dark and some jerks think a long distance trail should close at sunset...Does the AT/OT/CDT close at sunset...I think not.... At the remote gas station on 19, I destroyed 2 Double Charbroiled Cheeseburgers(microwaved), Quart of Chocolate milk, and some other junk. $20bucks including Wendy's Monster burger. Sign said 2 miles to Herman. Odd place that Herman is...we hit town and they had rolled up the sidewalks and shut off the lights. When we arrived it the park we were cheered for being hardcore bikers riding in after dark from a large group camp singing songs around the fire. We passed on that group, since they sucked moar than the BDBB. As it turns out, there are really no suitable trees for hammock camping, not even the shelter posts. So we crashed out on a couple picnic tables wrapped in our princess sheets and listened to the locals hoot n hollar. The cops seemed quite busy with kids jumpin the fence into the city pool, or who knows...they managed to rip around the park all night long. A few hours of sleep found us puffy eyed and hungry, lucky for us Hardee's just opened. Better off poaching a nites sleep on the trail. As we finished breakfast we were loading up our gear to sound of thunder in the distance. The cashier at Hardee's made sure to inform us of a red sky at dawn and the belief of rain for the day. Red in the Morn Sailor take Warn. Good thing we are not sailors and we are riding bikes, right? One of the customers tells us the storms are headed north of Columbia, nothing to worry about. I should have checked for myself. We hit the road and then trail for few miles enjoying the wind at our backs for once. About five miles into the return trip we sense the storm is going to over take us. Winds were rockin things. Thunder and lightning! Lucky for me to have spotted an umbrella on the side of Technology Blvd on our way out of town. Never one to let a gift such as this pass I packed it along for the ride. You know, ya never know... (Overpacker Alert). With rain pounding around us we huddled under the gift umbrella for about 20 minutes, the rain just got stronger, so we hopped a fence to take shelter on some rocks. the trees were far enough apart to get a shelter erected. He hung out here for about 30 minutes. Only once did the lightning get close...It struck something on the hillside above us. Very sketchy for a bit.
As the storm passed we packed up to hit the trail. I think we were ready to be home. As noted here in this fine disposable camera photo...
Sasha Petrosovitch displays the ever present Team Seagal Wave. Did I mention our Olympus Stylus 770sw died after 4 years...filled with water on the a previous trip with Gunshow Busken and his fine trooper Walker. Moar on that at a later date.
In true Trail Monster fashion we learn something ever time we take a trip. As noted here a fine soldier is learning to ride sans hands for the first time.
Awesome to see her picking up much needed skillz for fall soul krushing and wrist snapping. With the storms passed and new skillz in hand we pushed for home. Fuel needs require a brief stop at Peers Deli for a sandwich and kindness from strangers.
After finishing a nice turkey sandwich on the front step and watching the chickens free range around the place, a local had stepped out of the store and smiled, and said I betcha wish they sold towels in there.
My response, actually dry socks would be even better. She laughed and climbed in her big red truck and drove off. A few minutes later she rolled back up and jumped out with a big smile and says Hey here ya go, just some old farm socks but there dry. Awesome. A gift from a stranger on the trail, humanity does prevail in remote places. She smiled turned and drove away. No chance other than in this post to thank her....So (THANK YOU! Trail Angel). Dry feet make the world much better...
We made it back to Defiance, this time to Dave and Jacquies Place across the corner, (Home of
the World Famous Stuffed Squirrels). This place has character(s), refer to Trail Monster session 06/2009. Not only that, but they serve PBR longnecks! The menu says today's special is a Red Devil? So why not howabout 2 of those and 2 corn on the cob. A "Red Devil" is perfect trail fuel, Grilled Cheese(Cheddar), Fresh Sliced Tomatoes, Grilled Onions and I think an arm load of delicious BACON! Awesome, the only correction would be pepperjack to bring on some heat. oh and I think with a few beers and lunch our tab was about $15 bucks.
Now completly satisfied we have TrailMonstered properly with PBR's we turn our wheels for home.
Along the way you MIGHT find signs that surely piss off Joe Brazil and friends that are proposing a ban on bicycles on the roads of Southern St. Chuck...Guess while you're at it Joe you better think about the safety of automobile drivers and ban tractors, mail delivery, school buses, and forbid anyone from having mechanical troubles on the roadway. I am sure the list will grow.Meanwhile, in moar civilized sections of St. Charles County undercover do gooders have put in a bike lane....Note...very near the new Highway Patrol office on Hwy 94 and 40/61/I-64. Must have happened back near the turn of the century after they kicked the horse and buggy out.
All total 131 miles round trip from right out the front door pedal powered.