Page 61: - No Return Ticket - Just a Ride Report /w Pics - From the beginning
It was getting late and 4 or 5 buses have just blasted past us without stopping. Finally a bus did stop. We jump on for Reynosa Mexico, $12. OK!
Reynosa. I’m not too happy to be at a bus station with our bike sitting in some barn in Mexico. But, at this point we are glad to have made it this far in one day and still have daylight to spare.
Bus tickets to Chicago in hand, ‘sweet as honey’. Horseshoe label Tequila, ‘smooth as silk’. Not applying enough sun lotion, ’big mistake’.
Tues AM: Cavegirl and Cavebiker are felling emotional, ‘we have gone so far together……………….’
We each have a couple tacos from a street vendor before getting on our bus. Reynosa Mexico to Mc Allen Texas, Mc Allen to Dallas, Dallas to Chicago. We arrive in Chicago by 11:30 PM the next day. We are fried. In Chicago we get a ticket to Milwaukee. While getting close to Milwaukee the bus driver announces the next stops, Tomah and Eau Claire. Eau Claire is the closest we can get to Hayward by bus, it’s just 100 miles.
Heidi gets off the bus in Milwaukee at 2:30 AM, I stay on to Eau Claire. I arrive at 7:00 AM. I buy a bottle of water and sunscreen. I walk down a rural road, far away from anything trying to look like I’m in need of help. An hour and a half later I get a ride up to the main highway, near a hotel. I walk into the hotel and ask the receptionist if she has a box I could have. She comes back with a box top, perfect. Next she hands me a big magic marker to make my sign. On one side I write “Rice Lake” and the other side I write “Spooner” In a half an hour I get a ride to Rice Lake. There, I walk across the road to the on ramp and the first vehicle picks me up for Spooner. This ride drives me a few extra miles down the road. I could walk from here if I had to. I get a ‘Rock Start’ coffee drink then ask this old guy to please take a photo. He tried so hard to get the perfect shot. People are so nice.
From here I get another quick ride from a young woman and her black lab. She was camping in southern Wisconsin doing biology experiments with her dog. Now I only had a 6 mile hike to the cabin. I am fired up for the hike. It’s through county forest and back roads and it’s my backyard. The last few miles I hiked through rain and thunderstorms. The walk up the driveway was surreal. I go on autopilot and start connecting up all the plumbing fixtures and the water pump. I have a gallon and a half of fresh water to prime the pump and get the water going, No Problem…...
My buddy Rick stops by. We discuss my situation and what I gotta’ make happen down in Mexico. Rick is a master carpenter and in my opinion a master mechanic. He says “You have to come over tomorrow with the trailer so we can take the hubs off” Rick has always been there to help, advise or rally behind me. He is also a great adventurer himself buying old yachts in California, living on them while totally redoing and selling them. How cool is that! He tells me to come over early and we’ll all have breakfast. The world is full of nice people.
Rick makes room in his new garage.
Don stops by to show off his new tractor and to help Rick do some landscaping. Nice rig…….
The last bearing was a bugger to get off but Rick dove down with a hammer and chisel and five minutes later had that thing off. “This bearing is loose and the seal is gone” Rick says. I drive into Hayward and pick up new bearings and seals for both wheels.
Rick and Don are off playing in the sand with the tractor. I clean the hubs and races and jam grease in the bearings with my fingers as best I could. I put everything back together just like it came apart. The bearing that was hard to get off was hard to get on. Ten minutes with a hammer and chisel did it. Oh yeah, this is fun!
Our good friends Cindy and Rick who always come to our rescue.
New trailer bearings, new engine oil, new wipers, I checked all the tires. I am a ‘Go’ for the recovery mission to Mexico starting tomorrow morning…..
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