May 3, 2001

5/3/01 Booneville, KY

19 miles

In order to avoid getting a motel in Irvine, we decided to do a short, short day to the bike shelter at the First Presbyterian Church in Booneville.

The morning was overcast, so we put on our raingear. It took three hills to get into this valley, and two to get out. It didn't take long for us to get hot in the rain gear, so we took it off.

There was very little traffic as we rode through the quiet valley, only hearing the occasional dog. Kind of spooky. We passed one guy with a rifle or shotgun slung over his shoulder. He only laughed when we said our "good morning."

Just another pile of trash beside the road

The crossing over to central Kentucky was as pronounced as when we entered the state. At the crest of our last hill, we entered Owley County. Very little trash, some farming, more houses instead of trailers, wider valley, and the mountains on either side were not as tall. Such a refreshing ride without the oppression of poverty all around you.

By the time we had arrived in Booneville, the heat and humidity were definitely on the rise. The church has provided a portable bathroom, a very cold water shower, and a covered porch with lights and a picnic table. Actually a very pleasant place to stay.

Shelter at the local church
just for cross-country cyclists. Great!

While checking my email at the library, I ended up helping the staff with their computers. I believe the regular librarian was off because these ladies didn't know much about the computers or how they worked.

We ate lunch at Dooley's Diner, very busy with local customers. After that, it was back to the shelter to take a long nap in the afternoon heat.

By the time it was dinner time, we could see dark clouds on the horizon and hear thunder in the distance. We rushed to get everything covered as the wind picked up to signal a storm. I figured if I were going to get caught out in a storm, I'd rather be at the diner than in this exposed shelter. Mike and I practically ran back to Dooley's.

After ordering dinner, we kept checking the weather outside and, believe it or not, the storm went over us with hardly a drop of rain. But while we're sitting there, who walks in but Bubba. It seems he found a shortcut that cut out a lot of our climbing. And then when it started to storm, someone gave him a lift for the last 20 miles into town.

So that night we got to know Bubba a little better and he kept us entertained with his stories. Unfortunately for us, the church is built along the Kentucky River and the mosquitoes came out in force, with Mike and me putting up tents in the dark.