Day 21 Indianola to Kosciuszko MS

Entering Paris

Today we rode 100 miles from the King to the General. No, not Elvis or anything to do with the Dukes of Hazard.

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The day started chilly and never got above 60 degrees. Yesterday’s sunny and blustery day was replaced by clouds and a steady wind out of the north. After a double breakfast, I joined with my mates and we rolled out of town at 7:30am. Hope to get back here soon to see the B. B. King Museum and all the Blues Trail sites.

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This is the 21st day of the PAC Tour Southern Transcontinental trip. If we were riding the Tour de France, the 21st day is the big finish in Paris after 3 weeks of racing (plus two rest days). We have pedaled about the same 2200 miles, with no rest days, at half the speed of the professionals. We did get birthday cake for lunch, almost as good as EPO.

After yesterday’s punishing winds we were nervous about today, however the north wind pushed us along at over 20mph. We visited a lovely little place named after my sister.

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Didn’t get a chance to go into this place – worried that it might be an on-line trap.

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The halfway point today was the Hillside Wildlife Refuge. This has a long road going through woods and swamps, and the bridge in the middle is closed so we had no traffic. On the far side is the first real hill in days, at the edge of the Mississippi flood plain.

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We were warned that dogs in MS were notorious bike chasers, so why did most of them just chill in the front yard? Arkansas had more “runners” and they were still not too bad. I just yelled at them and most gave up the chase.

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Many of the fields were filled with cotton plants, ready for the picking, and giving off balls of white fluff that got stuck in surrounding yards and bushes. To harvest this crop, you are going to need a big tractor, and perhaps a classic Lexus too.

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We stopped in Ebenezer at Siddin’s Country Store, the oldest in the county. Everyone was very nice to our group of sweaty, neon Lycra clad cyclists. Inside it was a combination convenience store, grill counter and swap shop.

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They helped me learn how to pronounce our destination, Kosciusko, named after the Polish general Tadeusz Kościuszko who helped the American colonies during the Revolutionary war.

The dreaded headwind never appeared and we finished at a reasonable time, so we can now do laundry and contemplate what attractions and dining possibilities are within walking distance. No way I’m going to climb back on that bike until tomorrow.

Please support my ride to raise money for the Pan Mass Challenge and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.

Chris Spear

P.S. Check out Jim Salvie’s blog