Right now I’m in Sanderson, TX. I woke up at 4:49am near Comstock in my tent at a state park in the barren lands of south west Texas. I was riding out of the campsite at 5:38am and it was dark as night. I had my little head lamp and red blinky, both with fresh AAA batteries. I had cooked and ate 6 pack of vege sausage patties and the last few drinks of V-8 from the big can I opened last night. When I left camp I did a look around to see if anyone else was ready. I knew there had to be riders out on the road already and that anyone not ready yet might catch up to me so I took off alone. A short winding ride back to the US 90. Then a left under the only street lamp for miles and miles. Texas is flat but it does have some slight hills so running only by the light of my head lamp it was hard to tell if I was going up, down or on flat. Seeing the edges of the light emitted and having it move in unison with the direction I’d turn my head messed with me a little. I was getting dizzy, but not dizzy more like vertigo on the bike. But then the light from the sun lit the sky to a dark blue and the lines of the distant hills could be seen. Dukes and three of the girls, Katie, Bayla and Crystal caught up to me and we rode together. That was nice, Crystal said her usual “what’s up buddy” a few hills and a few miles and then the road was light well enough to put my lamp away as we made it to Langtry, TX. Langtry amounted to looking at abandoned and or collapsed buildings. We hoped for a cafe but no luck. Back to the 90 we did another few miles together but I slowed it down and watched them go ahead.

After about 25 miles of nothing but desert I had run my water bottles dry. Five more slow lonely morning miles before I made it to the SAG wagon to fill the water and make a bit to eat. About 9 riders were already there filling, snacking and chatting. All the bikes leaning on the shady side of the van and I set mine in the sun light on the front of the van and stepped to the back with my bottles. I guess in the morning I’m a grouch. I don’t think I said anything. Just filled my bottles and went back to my bike to make some pb and j. I had some food in my pannier but didn’t want to stand in the sun. I doesn’t matter but I had not yet put on my sunblock and I’m tired of getting baked in this shadeless part of the country. Everybody but Dan and Callie had saddled up and rode off so I was standing there thinking that it was not likely that I would ride with them since it seems to me like they are into each others company. I stood at the front of the van by my bike and looked up the road at the backs of the other bikers getting smaller and riding away. I looked to one side of the road and then the other and thought that it looks just like yesterday and the day before and in my mind I had a glimpse of the next day and the day after and I saw the same thing. So, not wanting to ride alone on a road that today bores me, I took the flip-flops out of my bag and loaded the bike into the van and SAG’ed the last 50 miles.

So here in Sanderson at a roadside motel I have not showered in the 8 hours but I have ate, tried to ride around but got a double flat from thorns in the first tenth of a mile, swapped tires, walked around, took photos of the town, met a local and got a tour of his back yard with chickens ans his chihuahuas. I can’t remember his name but it was some variation of “Cuba” because that’s where he is from. Nice guy but I could only understand about one word per sentence. Most of what I understood had to do with drinking. gave a hair cut to Dukes to clean up the mess someone (or two) did not knowing how to cut a dudes hair with clippers, sat in bed watching TV, wished for ice cream.