After a brutal 79.13 miles of heat and dehydration, the "Race Against Death Tour" comes to an oasis on the prairie in the form of a convenience store....
Although details on just where we were are fuzzy, a couple of things remain crystal clear about the end of the sixth day of the "Race Against Death Tour". First, we had found an honest to goodness convenience store near Interior, South Dakota, and secondly, "Sturgis" motorcycle freaks were everywhere. "Sturgis" is the name given by the common folks to the big motorcycle rally held the first week of August or so every year. It has its epicenter in Sturgis, South Dakota, thus the name. It attracts thousands of motorcyclists and they were all over the place out here. The convenience store sold gas, so this was a hotbed of activity this particular afternoon.
We found some precious water and grub, spied a bench outside, and plopped our tired bodies down to consume and watch the goings on. It was so good, and so busy, that we barely took time to talk other than to say the occasional, "Did you see that?" or "Check that out!". We saw a bunch of cool Harleys and a bunch of strange characters riding them. A couple stood out for me:
First was the pair on a Harley that pulled up under the canopy for gas. They weren't all that remarkable at first: a guy driving and a gal on the back in typical Harley biker dress. Then it happened.....she got off the bike. You know how they say some folks shouldn't wear certain types of clothing? I'll just say that this was a gross violation of that piece of wisdom.
Then there was the guy that had a flat tire. A big, gruff looking mechanic was repairing the tire with a plug. He finished up the job and called the motorcycle's owner over to him. "Now listen, this is a plug. It ain't gonna hold forever, but it'll git ya down the road till you can get a new tire. Whatever ya do, do not put more air in the tire. It ain't gonna hold." Well, you guessed it, we watched as the guy rolled his motorcycle over to the air hose, checked to see if the mechanic was looking, and stuck the chuck on the valve. Poof! Psssssssssssssssssss...........
Troy laughed so hard, I thought he was going to attract the guys attention and get us in trouble. Good thing Harley's are loud! Anyway, we were having so much fun, and we were so spent, that we must have sat there for two hours. Finally, we decided we had better go get our tent set up at the campground and take a shower.
It was a good relaxing show, and the campground was just as pleasant. We all got showered, and played hacky-sack until the sun went down. It was great to be back out of the desolation and despair we had gone through the past two days. We looked forward to the next day with some eagerness. Things seemed to be looking up.
Next week: The three tourists find out about the "bad" in The Badlands.
5 years ago this week...
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