On my way out of Tumwater I came to a bronzed likeness of Mark Twain sitting on a bench. He is posed looking up from a book toward you if you have the gumption to repose for a moment with a great author. When in Vermont we were invited to breakfast at the historic home of Rudyard Kipling. Twian and Kipling were friends and twain even inspired Rudyard to transform the attic of the home into one of the first "man-caves", a term Twain apparently introduced. The billiard table he gave Kipling is still there as well as the checker board and other games of their time. As I relaxed beside the bronze I recalled sitting where he surely had in the hills outside of Brattleboro.
Unlike the days previous where I walked in the "big city" I met many people all through the day after the roadside turned from sidewalk to grass an trenches. The difference in peoples from the city and country is stark. By the time I reached Tenino I had made a few friends and shared many "belly laughs". I had no worries about getting help at the end of the day. I stayed outside of the fire station where they offered a shower. I rested well in the heart of Tenino and had breakfast in the morning where I love to eat at every small town, the "Liars table". Sitting amongst the wisemen of Tenino-stone country I listened as they discussed another pressing world problem, moles. I daydreamed looking at the Tenino stone wall of the diner adorned with many, and some collectible, pictures of "the Duke", listening to the varied techniques to eradicate pesky vermin from a well kept yard. A blast from a shotgun seemed to be the accepted sure-fire method. Full of coffee and new memories I continued down Old 99.
The scenery and wildflowers are rich with colors. I had to stop and snap a few pictures of the late spring fields whose beauty cannot be fully appreciated with a photograph. The snow capped mountain and blue skies made the days a joy to walk through. Much of the way to Centralia the shoulder was wide enough for me to keep rolling without walking in the bottom of the trench as I had to do the day before into Tenino but I still had my times patiently waiting for the traffic to pass. Then is when I able take in the birds and the bees, or watch the snakes slither off the warm roads edge along the grass away from the impending world.
Getting to the edge of Centralia I was invited to a small town, Nonaville, in the yard of a loving couple. They had built a tiny hardware store, a saloon and all the shops a town would ever need. The man, a diabetic, showed me their "red-neck" hot-tub, a free jucuzzi liner he buried in the garden. Then he walked me to a shed that had his tub heater he had fashioned from an R-V heat pump and a propane tank to circulate the water. Then he pulled out the water-jet system, an electric trolling motor. I could have visited for hours but the sun was going down and my energy was almost spent.
Further into town as I passed a neighborhood pub I was called to stop for a picture. I noticed they had a large parking area and asked if I could hold-up there for the night. Thankfully the day had again worked out well with a ride, a nice dinner and good company.
This day like all others I met many who live with diabetes. A man stopped to talkn who told me he had lost fifty pounds and was getting his diabetes under control with activity and diet changes. He was an inspiration.
Do something each day for your health. Eat something green, walk further than the mailbox and enjoy the scenery.