Today, the last day of August 2014, held plenty of pleasant moments, a disappointment or two, and consideration by many to go FAR beyond expectations to help SAM and ME reach distant destination(s) ...and then to be welcomed back to MORRIS, Minnesota by an old friend who went the extra mile to arrange a comfy room for SAM and ME in familiar surroundings.
Leaving MOREHEAD, MN early in the morning, following a stormy night.
Route MN 9 is a desolate narrow roadway - straight as an arrow - with many small farming villages - 100 or so residents - spread out some 10 to 15 miles apart between the 100 + mile distances between the larger towns of MORRIS and BENSON.
SAM and ME Walked and Rolled many hours - miles - , while receiving two awesome rides and a visit along the roadway of a charming lady offering laughs and magnificent fresh succulent veggies direct from the farm...which I have been eating raw.
Crops of wheat, Corn, and a half dozen other varieties are ready to be harvested.
Please say HELLO to (forgot to write her name) the charming lady who stopped SAM and ME only to offer right-off-the-farm Tomato, red Potato, delicious Corn, and Cukes (Cucumbers) to eat along the way...and eat I did, saving a few for tomorrow.
Taking lots of photographs of SAM and ME, she jumped out of her car for a few more "selfies", before she drove off, leaving me wondering ... where did that lovely lady come from...where did that lovely lady go...who was that lovely lady?
Please say HELLO to CHRYSANN, who stopped to give SAM and ME a ride to the town of BRECKENRIDGE, Minnesota...stopping first at WALMART where I purchased new bungies to replace the ones (sorry, BOB) lost yesterday somewhere on I-94 while riding with RUSTY to FARGO.
CHRYSANN then drove those extra miles to put SAM and ME on our way on Route 9, some 5 miles South of BRECKENRIDGE.
Walking and Rolling to the tiny village of CAMPBELL, I stopped to rest and solicit a ride toward the City of MORRIS, some 35 miles distant. Alas, many vehicles passed us by...but none stopped. It rained a bit. It became dark. Torn between sitting / sleeping in my folding chair (thank you, BOB), or walking into the night to reach MORRIS.,,
I opted to WALK into the night.
Some hours later, in pitch blackness, a SUV stopped, asked if we were OK, and offered to drive SAM and ME in the opposite direction from which it came. We accepted the lady's offer (to her words..."you won't hurt me will you...?")
Half hour later, ANNEGINE, sent by her family to come rescue SAM and ME from walking the darkness of narrow Route 9 (they had passed us on their way home...deciding to return after making room for SAM inside their SUV) dropped us off at CASEY's
I promised that we would not attempt to walk at night in the future...scaring te heck out of passing motorists.
ANNEGINE, having dropped us off at CASEY's Convenience Store in down town MORRIS, rushed away to return home, many miles away - and very much out of her way.
Talk about going that extra mile !
...and surprises for the day were not yet over...
SAM waiting all afternoon on Route 9 roadside in the village of CAMPBELL...from where we set off on foot into the night.
* * * * * * * * * *
MORRIS is a town I have twice before walked through. CASEY's referred us to the POLICE to help find a place to spend the night.
Walking the darkened streets of MORRIS, we found the POLICE Department...CLOSED until Tuesday, September 02. Leaving the ante-room entrance, a voice asked me to pick up the telephone receiver hanging on the wall. The voice from the receiver listened to my story, remotely unlocked the Entrance door...and please climb the stairs where an Officer will talk to you...
An Officer exited from a side door...Hello, Bruce...he greets me. Shocked he knew who I was, explained...two years ago we met and chatted as you walked through MORRIS.
Returning his greeting, I explained how SAM and ME came to have returned in the dead of night to MORRIS.
He fetched a sheaf of papers...forms to be filled out for the local SALVATION ARMY Program that offered "emergency" assistance to needy folks - like SAM and ME.
I asked the Officer how he knew it was me...he replied...I watched you push your cart ...which I recognized from your prior visit... into our parking lot,
Bottom line: I was offered a room at the local Motel NORTHLAND PRAIRIE INN, to which SAM and ME, following the map offered, reached in under 10 minutes...only to realize that three years ago, I had taken a room here on my first walk through MORRIS.
Coincidences...kindness...and reaching out to SAM and ME, completed a day of contrasts, walking a great distance, riding with considerate genuine ladies taking that extra mile - even with a degree of fear for their own safety in the dark of night...and interrupting a day on the farm...taking a..."road I NEVER travel..." to share moments and veggies with a complete stranger...
I again ask myself...Why Me?
...an old man, searching and sharing (on our Blog) America in a way not before realized...
...and as my Native American sixth grader in WOLFE POINT, Montana asked me...what weapons do you carry for protection?..., I pointed to my heart...then to my head, replying: only these...