Catching up

Another year of our annual bike ride is over and now it’s time to unpack the bags and start the laundry. Even though it was really hot (high 90’s with humidity) we sure had a good time.  We needed a ride to Glenwood, Iowa so William drove some of us to the starting town and then drove back the next morning. We also wanted him to get some experience driving by himself in larger cities before he leaves next year for college. His drive was 5 1/2 hours long one way, so when he got up the next morning to wish us luck and see us off he  went back to bed for a couple more hours. 7 am was a little early for him that morning. During the week he stayed at home and fed the animals and watched over the farm. The only ‘real’ trouble that he had was with our two dogs. Now there’s a surprise huh? Well I don’t know if the dogs were mad that we were gone or if they were happy that we were gone, but they decided to tear up one of our NEW porch cushions. If you remember how hard it was to find them in my earlier post, can you believe that they did this? I haven’t checked it out yet, but William took a picture. I’m hoping that I can just sew it back together.

It rained a couple of days and he took also some pictures of the storm as it rolled by. We’re still trying to figure out the new camera and some of his pictures turned out really cool. But after looking at them I’m thinking that maybe he should have been inside the house where it was a little bit safer.

Very,very, naughty dogs!

Pictures of heat lightning

While I was riding my bike this year, I was thinking how it’s so different this ride was than it was the past few years. Work was really stressful before and riding on the Ragbrai bike ride was a great way to get away from it all. But because I’m not back in the ‘working environment’ I don’t have the same stress as before. So while I was riding my bike I was trying to figure out just why in the world you would do this for 7 days. You are hot, very very wet from sweat, and your whole body can hurt all at once or take turns during the day hurting.  So I came up to the conclusion that everyone on the ride has a different reason, and that reason can and will change as you change. So after thinking about this for a few days, I came up with my reason this year to be on the ride. My reason now is to be able to enjoy a week with some friends that we’ve become very close with and also to understand and appreciate the very small things in life. What I mean by this is that sometimes you don’t stop and think about the small things that you are happy that you  have. The first thing that comes to my mind is a shower. You have never really enjoyed a shower unless you are riding outside with around 15,000 other riders in the heat and dirt. When you are able to take a shower at the end of the day, I am telling you there is nothing else like it. You peel off your clothes and throw them on a pile and step inside the shower and absolutely everything that could have or did go wrong that day is only a memory. When I first get into the shower I close my eyes and take a deep breath and just enjoy the water coming out and hitting my head. Another thing  that you understand much better is at the end of the ride when all your team is in camp,  you open up a cold beer and it tastes wonderful. Now it’s not a secret to anyone that I like beer, but when it’s cold and you just rode 65 miles and with an elevation climb of 4700 feet in 98 degree weather – a cold beer sitting around in lawn chairs will never taste the same any other place in the world as it does then. The last thing is just taking the time to think about things. I know that I probably do this too much when I’m riding a bike.  I make lists of things in my head what I need to do when I get back, what has gone well these past few months that has been done and other things that I still need to work on. Then I think that I really should probably be home working on those things – so I tell myself to quit thinking and just ride!

Every year, and it looks like this year will be the same I have such a terrible time with retaining fluids when I get home. I can gain 10 pounds in the first few days.  Daryl says that he thinks that it’s just in my head but I’m not sure. Some years I can loose my ankles completely and most of my shoes don’t fit. It’s really not a good look by any means! I am thinking that maybe I need to ride the bike for awhile tonight and see if that helps. Well maybe I’ll just see what it looks like tomorrow morning first.

The ride this year was southern Iowa and there are a couple of places along the route that we saw that was really cool. We saw an old German barn that was taken down in Germany and put back together in Iowa, Rock Creek State Park with tons of swimming and camping areas, outside Laser shows , lots of music concerts on main streets, visiting friends who own a micro brewery, ride the hills that they used in the movie ‘Twister’,  200 foot water slides, and got thrown in the 1911 jail in Silver City (just for a photo op) And even though it’s over and it’s now  just another memory – it sure is nice to hang out with good friends, eat tons of good food, and to just enjoy the days out with some of your fellow bicyclists – all 15,000 of them!

Elk Horn

Busy streets

Cooling ourselves down by putting our feet in cold swimming pools


This entry was posted in Our dogs, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Catching up

  1. tammy k. says:

    glad you’re back safe and sound! looks like you had a great time. oh, and i loved the pic of the storm with the outline of the barn. very cool pic. and i can’t have any cushions within reach of my dog… she has quite the taste for stuffing… haha.

    • farm2011 says:

      I have no idea what I’m going to do with those dogs. When I just start to think that they are doing better – they prove me wrong! If you come up with a solution with your dogs please pass it on!

      • tammy k. says:

        that’s so funny you said ‘just as you think they are doing better, they prove me wrong’ because i experience the exact same thing with ivy! she will go for days, sometimes even weeks, and not tear a single thing up. we will leave her alone for hours and she will behave. then all of a sudden, she will go on a rampage when one of us steps outside for a minute or even just takes a shower! i think she gets bored easily. and we have bought the ‘smart dog’ toys, to try and keep her amused, but it’s just a throw of the dice to see how she behaves. good thing she’s cute… haha.

        one thing we have started doing is hiding treats when we leave, just a couple, in obvious places, to try and keep her amused. sometimes we will give her a pig ear when we walk out the door to keep her busy. now that the weather has cooled a bit, she will be spending a lot more time outside when we are gone. just could not leave her out in that horrid heat and humidity for any length of time.

        i know that this doesn’t help much but maybe if you could give the dogs a big bone or something to keep them occupied when they are going to be alone for a while they will leave the cushions alone. we get our pig ears from rural king around here. they have some of those big cow bones and stuff like that. good luck!

        • farm2011 says:

          I think that’s a great idea! That way they’ll think they are getting away with something and keeping occupied at the same time. Thanks for the suggestion – I think we’ll try it next time.

  2. Judy says:

    Nice blog! Glad you had fun and everybody’s home safe and sound! I also like the lightning picture– If you look closely, I think it’s actually hitting the barn. I agree William should have taken it from inside the house!

    • farm2011 says:

      It does look like it was hitting the barn but William said he didn’t think it did. But it still was a lot safer in the house.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *