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May 18- Day 42

More dreams. Odd this time because they always began with me waking up here. Sometimes alone, sometimes thinking Gillian should be here, but wasn't. Each time I knew the last time was a dream, but was sure this time was different.

For example, in one dream my campsite was the same, it was well past midnight, yet there was a dim illumination outside. Looking out there I saw a street lamp (there isn't one), and for some reason I knew that Gillian had left ahead of me, even though this area was dangerous. I went down the path on my bike after her, and it leads directly to a small town, where I park by a grocery store... and so on.

Then I would "wake up", check my watch, and a new variation would take form.

Weird.

The bugs weren't too bad this morning. I quickly packed and left. About 47k later, I was in Fort Frances, in a laundromat drying my tent before continuing.

The weather people were wrong. Again. You'd think I'd be used to it. Now they call for scattered showers today, clouds tomorrow, and scattered thunderstorms the day after.

Here's hoping they're wrong again.

I picked up twenty dollars American, just in case, but I should have enough food to last the trip through the states.

Dang, I hope this part of the trip gets easier...

I got held up at the Customs office. I can only assume that my crossing with only 20 buck american, and the gear on my bike roused some suspicion. Not as friendly as the Wolf Island crossing several years ago.

Time spent cycling: 7:59:00

Distance traveled: 204.62 km!!!

Total distance: 3213 km

Average Speed: 25.6 kph

Maximum speed: 55.1 kph

Current Location: Really Nice Inhabited House, about 30-40k from Duluth

What a day! I say again, WHAT A DAY! I started early, as you know. But it turned out I started even earlier than I thought. But I get ahead of myself.

The customs girl was cute. Literally and figuratively. She did the oldest investigator trick in the book, by getting me used to answering honestly.

Her "What's it like riding a bike like that?"

Me "Really comfortable, it's why I bought it."

Her "How far do you go a day on that thing?"

Me "Oh, about a hundred to a hundred and fifty kilometers a day."

Her "Any prior criminal history?"

Me (smiling) "No."

I guess it works on most people. Can you imagine someone going "Yes, ur I mean no!" or stammering confused, which as good as admitting you have a record and are wanted across the country.

Anyway, after all that I had a lot of biking ahead of me. A LOT. Nice scenery, the hills weren't too bad (and towards the end I'm sure they were more down than up). I got a short boost from a guy hauling his boat with his son (a Pokemon addict) for about 10-15K when I got to Orr. He was a local and couldn't help too much.

A quick note. I've decided in the interest of time, sanity, and the book that I have no need to hang out in America. Therefore, I'm not opposed to any help I might get along the way.

Case in point: When I got to Virginia, Minnesota, I came across a big RV, the kind that is a home on wheels and gets only 8 miles a gallon. The kind I've always wanted ever since I was a kid (except with better mileage). The man driving it (retired gentleman) at first said he didn't have room, but quickly changed his mind. We chatted almost the whole time, I admired his home on wheels and graciously accepted a pop and grapes from him. These vehicles when on bumpy roads, have a tendency to sway and heave like a boat! A little unnerving for a first time rider. He drove me from Virginia nearly to Duluth (his route changed and continued southward)! He also pointed out that I should still be on Central Time, and as such my watch was an hour fast. Oops.

Now, keep in mind that my distance traveled is what I actually biked. I actually did bike 204k today! All by myself! Add to that the two rides I got, and I easily covered just over 300k today! That's double my usual aim, which means I'm a full day ahead of schedule. This is good considering all the delays I've had here and there. And I'm not ashamed to admit that if I get another opportunity like that, I'll take it. At least until Sault Ste. Marie. Which, if I'm not mistaken, is still a good 700 klicks away. That's five days without help in all likelihood. Or four if I can keep up this pace!

A couple klicks after being dropped off and I found a nice house with a nice lady, who let me stay. After I started unpacking, she remembered there was a park not too far from ere with free camping. Well, after all the riding I've been through (and sunburn, it was so cold and cloudy I forgot to use sunblock), I had enough, and she was okay with me staying still.

That reminds me, while the trip was uneventful aside from what was mentioned, the weather seemed to conspire against me as usual. For two hours a rain cloud drizzled over my head, while in every other direction was blue sky or light fluffy clouds. When I took on of my half hour breaks, that's when it gets nice on me. Figures. Plus I'm all sunburnt for stupidly forgetting that UV rays pass right through clouds. Even my lip is burnt. I just hope I don't get another blister.

The Ontario map I have has most of my route, but is blank between Duluth and the Wisconsin border (covered by a city map of Sudbury). My computer map will have to fill in, because I don't want to buy anything here if I can help it.

I'll probably avoid Duluth directly, instead skimming it and Superior beside it. However, if anything looks promising along the way for using a phone line, I'll give the internet another shot.

I feel rather lonely lately. I've tried for days to reach Gillian or Wyatt, with no success. Last person I talked to was Grandma a couple days ago. But it's the not getting through to others that depresses you. Oh well, more reading, and off to bed.



Onto Day 43...