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We Made It Thu Aug 11, 2005 12:25 pm

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Joined: 22 Sep 2005
Posts: 63

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 9:45 pm    Post subject: We Made It Thu Aug 11, 2005 12:25 pm Reply with quote

The past 12 hours or so have not been nearly as bad as I expected. Yes, we did walk through the night, but our total this time was only 75 miles instead of 103, so this was a cake-walk in comparison. Plus, I had the Packers game to look forward to, making that much easier.

However, our night vigil was not without some interesting events.

The first notable event happened before we even left Walmart. My stomach apparently wasn't happy about how I went about feeding it--a huge sub, chicken wings, a double fudge yoo-hoo, some nasty banana split parfait, and yogurt all washed down with 64 oz of gatorade--and it got pretty angry. The cramps and grumblings in my stomach finally culminated in a fury of vomiting in the Walmart parking lot as I tried to get some fresh air, a garbage can, and finally the bathroom. I wasn't really mad at how sick I was, I was just angry that I was losing all of that nourishment and hydration that I looked forward to all day.

On top of that, apparently someone witnessed my antics and called the police. It's nice to know that someone was watching out for my health, but it wasn't like the officer could do anything for me, so I just saw it as an annoyance. When the officer came into the store I was partially rehabilitated and dressed in different clothes. He wandered around trying to find someone who fit the description of a shoeless tall guy in a white shirt walking around puking everywhere. When he asked me I just avoided the question and brushed him off, not wanting the attention. His suspicions settled on Matt, who at the time was shoeless and wearing a white shirt. He figured we had something to do with it, and he wanted to fulfill his duty as a civil servant, so he took our names and checked our drivers' licenses. Then we were on our way, my stomach still feeling pretty upset, but not wanting to back down from the challenge I had originally proposed to Matt.

Our decision to walk a busy interstate at night probably wasn't the best in our series of decisions. We found out that night on the interstate is when the big trucks come out to play. We didn't get 4 miles into it when an officer stopped and expressed his concern that we were barely visible in the dark night, and that what we were doing was pretty dangerous. His suggestion was to attach a light on the front of the stroller, which we did, and this made both of us feel a lot better about our chances of not getting pancaked.

Things were going along smoothly until the light stopped working. I don't know all the details about how batteries and flashlights work, but for some reason the flashlight would turn on brightly for about 5 seconds and then fade out. If you kept turning it on, the amount of time it remained lit would decrease each time, unless you let it sit for about 30 seconds. This presented a problem which we solved in the form of a great game that I invented. It was about 2 in the morning when I invented it, so the best name I could think of was "Don't Die," and the object was to get the semis or cars to move into the other lane and away from the shoulder. In order to do this, I would have to alert them of our presence and make them think us important enough to move for. This would require a series of well-timed flashes from our light, each only lasting about 2 seconds. I even set up a scoring system, so if anyone is ever stranded on the interstate at night, call me up and I can give you the official rules.

At about 5 a.m., we saw an oasis--an all-night truck stop--which delighted us to no end. We went inside and ordered the special "night owl" meal: 2 huge pancakes, an egg, and sausage for just $2.29. What a deal! We also drank a few cups of coffee, which contributed to our already exhorbitant caffeine rush from the energy drinks. We read the morning newspaper and were on our way again, only 12 more miles to go. We didn't know how easy these miles would pass until we got the bright idea to listen to some local radio stations and try to call in. I was a little to late, but still got through, for one prize, and another phone call to a station just ended up with me explaining our run to the hosts. I don't know if they played it, but it was interesting to talk to the people we were listening to on the radio. (We don't get to hear the radio station when we talk on the FB & HW show)

Now I'm at the hotel and should be sleeping, but I was so enamored by all the comments that I couldn't stop without reading every one of them. I can't believe our support is that widespread.

And yes, the bracelets are in, so hopefully the store will be set up soon to start taking orders. I haven't seen the bracelets myself, but from what I hear, they're pretty awesome. Everyone should have at least one for every limb. Like I said, I haven't seen them, but I know they are some kind of light blue (like water) and say "Water for Africa" on one side and "Run Across the USA" on the other, so you can have a two fold reminder, even though by the time you get them we will be almost done.
I hope they will serve as a reminder of the massive problem in Africa and that they'll be a conversation starter wherever you go.

Well, this turned out longer than I thought it would, and it's probably riddled with errors, but I don't care. Enjoy.

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