|Shelter on the Mo Pac trail|
A misty morning in bucolic Nebraska brought my first pheasant sighting, the fowl staring back at me across a recently tilled field before flying off into the distance. Soon after I spotted a species of woodpecker I had never seen before. Surely, I thought, this would be another good day. Me being wrong is a thematic skein you will see threaded throughout this walk.
By eleven the mist had turned to a sprinkle and then became a steady shower. The weather report had called for a gorgeous day, so I was unprepared, with only my poncho in reach. My rain jacket and pants were better options, and I turned to them when there was finally a break in the weather.
The damage was done, however, as I had allowed my clothing to get too wet, meaning I was cold and miserable for most of the day. Once I regained the Mo-Pac, which will take me all the way to Lincoln, the showers started again with even more ferocity than before.
Five miles later I limped sadly into Elmwood and my first chance of shelter. There was little open on a Sunday so I was fortunate to pass a mechanic's shop where I met Chad and Blake, who invited me inside the garage for a bit. We chatted while enjoying a couple of adult beverages until Jimmy showed up to provide the entertainment.
A Vietnam veteran, Jimmy had quite a few experiences in the jungles of Southeast Asia. Topics included a fatal tank hit-and-run, heroin, and prostitutes. These stories are available in all their glory on my adult site Thoughts XXXkew.
At seven the group dispersed and I made my way along the trail until I found a pleasant spot to set up the tent. As I settled down to sleep, I thought, you have to take the good with the bad. I'm just hoping the bad is in somewhat limited supply further down the trail.
17 miles/ 1853 total miles