Day 1- Brady, TX

Posted: July 23, 2010 in Texas

Day one started with an overnight camp-out at Inks Lake. Technically, the riding began on the 21st (we got started late on the 20th so our awesome roommate gave us a lift out of Austin). Our first stop was after a measly 10 miles in Llano, but hey, I wanted some breakfast. As we rolled into town we caught a nice downhill that took us past a LLAMA FARM. Got a meal at the Roadhouse Grill, and then took off again.
We took a quick stop in the middle of the 23 mile trek at a random post office on the side of the highway so Jon could find a restroom. The lady inside directed us to a gas station about a 100 yards down the road. It turns out, however, that it is no longer a gas station, but someone’s house. The lady was kind of grouchy about helping us even though we explained the mix-up and we clearly were off on an adventure. I don’t know what she expects though- there’s still a giant sign that says “GASOLINE” hanging off the front of the building.
Our next rest stop was in Pontotoc- we were hoping for a bite to eat at Connie’s Kitchen, the only restaurant in town. Unfortunately, we discovered they are only open on the weekend, but Ms. Connie was extremely nice and invited us in for some cold water and a cooling off. She even called the next town over, Fredonia, to find out when their cafe closed. We made the 9-mile ride just in time to grab an awesome fried chicken lunch at the Scalehouse Cafe,

Mmmmm, fried food.

and then decided it was siesta time as it was already 2:00 p.m. and there was no way we could keep going until it cooled down a bit.

Tired and full.

Fredonia is a funny little town- it’s pretty much nothing but about 50 people, a post office, and a peanut factory. Oh, and sheep. Yet it was here that we encountered the first of a string of awesome people and lucky events. As we were resting in front of the out-of-business general store, a lady pulled up and asked how we were doing. We all made some brief chit-chat, and then all of the sudden she tells us to “put on your shoes, and come eat some dinner at my house”. It turns out that Peggy is the daughter of the former owner of the general store, and was also previously married to a cyclist- very random but very awesome news for us. We hung out with her and her family for a few hours while it cooled down, and got some wonderful dinner and conversation to boot.

Tom, Heather, WT, and Peggy

When we finally left we were in such high spirits and so jazzed to go that we left without my water bottles. Standing on top of the hill and looking at what we would have to ride back over if we decided to go back for them, I said screw it and we headed off into the last 18 miles to Brady. Wisely, I had suggested that we just check and see if there was a Wal-Mart or similar in the next town where we could get some on the cheap. It turns out I was right. As we rolled into Brady, closing out our first day, I can honestly say that I have never been happier to set foot into a Wal-Mart. We cooled down, got more water bottles, and then met the next awesome person that fortune was delivering to us.
As we hung out in front of the supercenter a lady inquired about our bikes and what we were up to. In a roundabout way it was explained that since we are on a limited budget, we were planning on spending most of the nights camped out. That was when we got the second windfall for the day- she offered to pay for a hotel room for us for the night at a little place up the road called the Gold Key Inn that is owned by friends of hers. It was wonderfully unexpected, and the hotel room was great.

Alicia, a badass lady.

Our first day wrapped up with a nice, real bed, air-conditioning, and a few lessons in the unfathomable kindness of strangers.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s