About Lea's Foundation

In 1998, Lea Michele Economos, a young woman who died of leukemia at the age of 28, made a dying wish to her parents that others would not face the hardships she encountered by finding a cure for this disease. Her family started this charity to carry on that wish. Today, Lea’s Foundation takes an active role in finding a cure for leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s lymphoma and myeloma and to better the lives of people living with these diseases. At the UCONN Health Center, the Lea’s Foundation Center for Hematologic Disorders sponsors research in this field. A new program covers the cost of bone-marrow testing to help recruit life-saving transplants for patients. Also, annual scholarships are given to children with leukemia who are planning to attend nursery school. For more information on other projects carried out by Lea’s Foundation, please visit their website at www.LeasFoundation.org.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Day 28: Wind Blows (La Crosse, KS to Lindsborg, KS - 92 miles)

We learned from the locals in Kansas that most of the time the wind blows from the south but tends to change randomly.  Yesterday we were blessed with a nice tail wind coming from the west, which seem to come infrequently on this trip.  Today, however, there was a 11 mph wind coming straight from the east into our faces.  We left got up at 3:30 and left at 4:45 to try to avoid the wind and heat, which become unbearable by noon.  For the first hour of riding, it was very dark.  There was no sunlight or moonlight.  Our small lights on the front of our bikes were the only thing lighting up the road. I probably would have felt uncomfortable doing it alone. 

The sunrises in Kansas have been amazing and since we are riding east, we get to watch every second of it. Also we don't have to worry about trees or buildings getting in our way of seeing it. Here is a picture about an hour before sunrise.  

And then the sky gradually adapts and gets more colorful.  My favorite part is right before the sunrise. 

Seeing awesome stuff like this is vital for a good day of riding.  Thinking of anything other than my aching hands and saddle sores makes the day go by much faster.  This sunrise filled my brain with an hour of thinking about the physics and chemistry of the sun, and our solar system.  We also saw some lightning in the distance which distracted Dan and I to talk about the physics of lightning for about 20 minutes. 

At a grocery store in Hoisington we stopped at for snacks, we were informed there was a road detour ahead that would add miles to our day. All they said was the detour was "a far way around" because they are completely rebuilding a bridge. That was enough for Dan and I to test our luck. We ignored the detour sign and rode 2 miles to the demolished bridge.  We thought it would be better to wade across the creek than ride all the way around.  From a distance we saw a crane and heavy machinery working on the bridge and it did not look passable.  About 200 feet to the right across a field there were railroad tracks that looked like they crossed the creek. We changed into our sneakers and pushed our bikes over the field.  Right before the railroad tracks, the field dropped down about ten feet where there was a creek, and there was another very steep 15 foot climb to the tracks. I didn't think we could make it.  With our bikes weighing 70 lbs with all the gear, lifting them over our head and getting over this creek would not be fun. I was thinking about making two trips when I looked back and  I saw a construction worker wave at me and signal to come to the bridge.  

Very excited, we went back and were shown to a dirt dam that was made up the creek to stop the water while they were building the bridge.  It was perfect.  We walked the bikes over and were on our way.  It was a lot easier than I expected and we didn't have to go around the detour.  Overall, a good decision.  Here is a picture I snapped after we crossed. 

The day got harder and harder as the sun came up.  By 9 o'clock, it was hot and the wind was blowing right in our face.  I was working harder to ride 10 mph than I was the day before when I cruised at 22 mph.  Our bags act as sails, so tail winds are awesome and head winds make the day miserable.  We got to Lindsborg around 1 o'clock exhausted and hot.  We got lunch at Scott's Grocery Store.  It seemed like everyone in the store was curious as to what we were doing.  Previously, we were riding on the ACA bike route, so cross country bikers were riding through the towns daily.  Now we are creating our own path so everyone is very interested to talk to us.  People gathered to talk to us at the deli and figure out what we were doing.  They even called the owner, Scott, to come on the intercom. Before we knew it Scott offered us free lunch and another woman donated $30 so we could get a motel room next door.  The people in Kansas have been really nice. 

Tomorrow we plan to do another tough day into the wind to Osage City. We are tapering our wake up time gradually. We plan to wake up at 2 tomorrow.  We are meeting with the pastor of St. Patrick's Catholic Church when we get there.  He said he will help us find a place to stay. 

And here is our daily video from the road. 

1 comment:

  1. Dan was on WTIC NewsTalk 1080 with Ray Dunaway this morning. I'm working on getting the podcast. Check back later!