Indiana welcomed us with a gloomy forecast of thunderstorms and high winds, steering us towards a well-deserved rest day. It had been eight days since our last one, and we were ready; it felt great to rest our weary bones.
The next morning was chilly but dry, so we bundled up and continued on our way. At our first rest stop, we were treated to free coffee at a convenience store. We thanked them and continued on to Shelbyville, where we had a hearty pasta lunch at Pasqhetti’s Italian Restaurant and talked with some of the wait staff who were curious about our trip. After a delicious meal, our waitress, Michelle, informed us that it was on the house! The day was shaping up to be a good one. We stopped at the local bike shop and met Tim, the owner. He was friendly and loaned us his pump to top off the air in our tires. We headed on, fueled up and feeling good.
After about six miles, I noticed that Bill was no longer behind me. Just as I pulled over to wait for him, my phone rang. It was Bill; he was having a mechanical problem with his rear wheel. The rear rim was split. It’s an unusual failure, one I’ve never seen before in all my years of cycling. We can only assume it’s a defective rim.
Fortunately, we weren’t far from civilization; the next town was eleven miles down the road. We considered our options — hitchhiking, Uber, walking — and finally decided to ride very slowly to the bike shop in Franklin, IN. Bill’s bike has a Rohloff hub, making it impossible for him to buy a standard pre-made wheel. A new wheel would need to be built around his hub. Long story short, he had to order a new rim and spokes, and they won’t arrive until Tuesday. Then the wheel has to be built. Our best case scenario is getting back on the road on Wednesday. The delay also puts us behind schedule for my May 22nd chemo appointment in Kanas City. No one said this was going to be easy.
The next challenge, what to do in Franklin for four days. We’re aching to be back on our bikes.