Sunset in Missouri

Springfield Missouri

I slept under a bridge the other night avoiding the torrential downpour while the sky roared with bellows of thunder.  The dogs next to Highway 5 yelped and howled and somehow with all the noise the sound of raindrops pulled me under into a peaceful rest.

I headed for the pavilion by the lake to catch up on some reading.  After a few chapters the drizzle began to faintly disappear before my eyes and ever so often a drop would fall and splash against the ground.  The overcast sky lurked above me the rest of the day while i journeyed down Highway 5 to Highway 60 on my quest to fix my phone.


I made a few stops, at the Dollar General and a church, to pick up food and take a break.  I noticed Amish Country all around me.  Signs for share the road for both bicycles and horse-drawn carriages.  I back pedaled behind one for a few miles waiting to pass and thought about their lifestyle.  In my early years as a child I thought their odd lifestyle came from lack of intelligence.  Who in their right mind would give up all the technology we have discovered as a nation to live hundreds of years in the past? I now understand why.  A minimalistic lifestyle brings less stress and the technology is not a necessity, but a want that society became dependent upon.  I completely related to it.

After about 60 miles, I ended up going to the Sprint store and my phone stopped glitching.  Of course it would do that.  I met a woman there named Susan who asked what sports I played due to my athletic build.  I told her skiing, rock climbing, cycling, skydiving.  We talked about school, work and my cross-country trip.  She is a Geotechnical Engineer as well.  I was going to ask for a reference, but got distracted and never got her number.  My phone appears to be working at the moment.  I picked up a mophie which is pretty much the same thing as my external battery pack but it connects directly to the phone.  I ended up well off the trail by twenty miles or so and the clouds dispersed while the sunset beneath my eyes making the most beautiful view yet.  I nabbed a few pictures for everyone to see.

I continued on down the road for five more miles scoping out spots to sleep.  I found the perfect spot next to a high-end hotel, “The Marriot.” I am sleeping beneath their sign in a field of knee-high grass right behind an abandoned building.  I am low enough that no one can see me from the road or hotel and I nestled on the concrete pad.  Hopefully the rain is past us so I can get a nice, peaceful sleep.

The temperature dropped a bit tonight in the low 50’s.  I ran into two problems, condensation and freezing.  In the process of determining solutions.


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Brian Cray is not a cyclist. He’s not a hitchhiker. He’s not a train hopper or an adrenaline junkie. He’s just an ordinary man with gypsy blood in his veins, who can’t seem to settle down. Nothing defines him. He goes wherever this world takes him on this journey we call life, roaming the world, at will, by any means. He aspires for a life of indefinite travel, a tiny home in the woods for him and his wife, and any work that keeps him wanderin’. Brian Cray is a travel writer at heart, sharing his stories with the world one keystroke at a time.


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