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Mossfoot Was Here

May 16- Day 40

Got up early, but didn't leave early. I read some more of the book and finished off the carrots (but not the mushrooms, got sick of them quick). On the way out I managed to interview the park warden (not a park attendant, but the guy in charge of forest, fish and wildlife for the region. Great addition!

Ten klicks later and I'm near the Manitoba border in their tourist information center. No messages left in the log here from Erin or Linda, unfortunately. Must have passed by and didn't bother.

One message here, however, struck me as funny. A fellow from Japan is also crossing Canada, wrote in the log book on the 4th of June. His english isn't perfect, but what is funny is how he writes in train-of-thought.

I try cross Canada.

too much warm! warm warm warm......

Winnipeg is good city

I like it.

Someday I want to go back!

Then he mentions a cheaper hostel to stay at the one I did.

The head tourist information person was my last interview for Manitoba. And my last until Windsor. I've decided that the Ontario theme will have to do with familiarity. I spent most of my life in Ontario, most of what has made me what I am, from child to adulthood, can be found there. So I'll be doing the survey only with people I know. Friends, family, old teachers or employers maybe.

Kenora. It rained ever since the Ontario tourist info station. Light rain, mind you, but enough to get me and keep me wet. My gloves are useless, and might actually be harming my fingers (every finger has a hole and some have tape on them). I threw them out and plan to get replacements at the local Canadian Tire, as well as some silicone lubricant for the chain.

I'm writing this in a Robin's Donuts. I know what I said about not having donuts again... but those were day olds! I guiltily had a couple of fresh ones today, and chatted briefly with the locals. One said it was supposed to be sunny tomorrow. Here's to hoping!

Time spent cycling: 4 hours (est)

Distance traveled: 95 km (est)

Total distance: 2860 km

Average Speed: 24 kph (est)

Maximum speed: 58.6 kph

Current Location: Rapid River Park

For all that yesterday was good, today was bad. And vice versa. Yesterday I covered a lot of ground, had zero trouble, reasonably good weather, but didn't really get anything accomplished aside from that.

Today, I didn't even break a hundred klicks, wiped out, had my bike computer break down (again) and drizzly rain all day (even now I was going to write this by the serene pond nearby, but rain arrived again), but I got a lot done in Kerona.

I got travel insurance, which should cover me for my whole trip through the states. Nine days should be ample time for the trip from International Falls to Sault St. Marie. I found out my OHIP card is still valid, so no need to worry about that, either. I bought half decent gloves to replace the useless ones I threw out, and some silicone spray to lube the chain with, as well as adjusted the peddles slightly so they were in better alignment with the bike.

To prove that I don't always get a free ride, so to speak, the person at the campsite I ended up with didn't mind taking my money. Rats. Problem was, he was at the most expensive type of site (electricity and facilities for RV), and he was by himself (his two small children don't count) and as a result I had to pay 10 bucks! Oh well, it has to happen once in a while. Right now I'm drying off in the tent, praying the weather people are right, and that it'll be sunshine tomorrow and for the weekend. Still, it was the right thing to do staying here tonight, since tomorrow I'll have to dry off my tent and maybe even my clothes if they don't dry in here tonight (not too likely with humidity). Oh, and on the way here I saw my first vultures! I've never seen them in the wild before. What a wingspan!

It's such a shame about the weather! This is such a great park, I'd love to stay here for a while. But because my insurance starts on Sunday, I'm on a tight schedule. I'm 190k from Fort Frances, and so I doubt I'll even make it to the border tomorrow. But on Sunday I will be on American soil, and then the clock is ticking. 9 days to S.S.M., that's all I have, but it should be more than I need.

I'll need to fix my speedometer again tomorrow (I should replace the bloody thing), and my food bag needs some mending. I should have enough food for the trip without having to buy more at American prices.

War of the Worlds is a wonderful story! Sure the facts are mostly wrong, but this was written over a hundred years ago! One can forgive scientific inaccuracies. But the fact he took such pleasure and interest in getting what were considered facts at the time straight, that gives much to be admired for an imaginative writer of the day.

OH! I can't neglect to mention THIS! As I was getting out of Kerona, a long brown van came over the hill, then fishtailed, spun around TWICE! A full 720 degree spin that it barely came out of in one piece! I checked to see if anyone was hurt, but nobody said anything, only one person got out of the van and walked for a while. The van caught up to the ex-passenger, and I heard the guy yell "Don't you EVER pull a stunt like that again!". I couldn't believe it. That near wipe out was on purpose! If I had been one hundred feet farther ahead, I would have been in its path (it took up the whole road in its swerving), probably would have been hit, possibly killed.

To think that if I hadn't made one final call to grandma, I would have been hit. Or if I didn't stop for a chicken sandwich at KFC. Of if I hadn't wiped out earlier and tried to get my bike computer working again. If any one of those things had been different, I could be in the hospital.

Good thing my OHIP is still valid...

Good thing I bought that insurance!

Onto Day 41...