|Delgado' Dugout in Sterling|
Lu served me up a hot breakfast and I was soon out the door. I wanted to make Sterling before the post office closed so I could pick up the maps I'd missed in Big Springs. Nineteen miles lay between. I drove a fast pace, determined not to cut it close.
From the moment I struck pavement I had a powerful feeling something good was going to happen today. This odd bit of intuition was quickly proved accurate. My phone vibrated, indicating a text message. It was Junior! He had been grounded and not allowed to contact me for his birthday, but now was back in the good graces of his mother.
Even now as a jaded teenager (he'd just turned thirteen) he was concerned for my well-being and wanted to hang out with me again. I made a deal with him. If he stays out of trouble for the next six months (his mom is the judge) then I will return to Doniphan sometime in 2013. I pray I am forced to honor my part of the bargain. I can't explain how greatly I want Junior to succeed.
The miles melted after our joyous contact and I reached Sterling by three and retrieved the maps. Way behind on e-mail and the blog, I spent the next few hours in the library. Once done I began the search for grub. Though starving, I passed up a multitude of options before reaching the city limits and circling back to Front Street. There I found Delgado's Dugout, a Mexican and Italian restaurant housed in an old church. Naturally I had chips and salsa to start and chicken parmigiana for the meal and drank a Guinness in remembrance of Irish religiosity.
More of interest than the strange cultural melange of culinary manufactures was the clientele. I've rarely met with a more welcoming reception. I gave out cards and donation forms like hot cakes and three different customers tried to pay for my dinner. I was even offered an interview at the local radio station tomorrow. Several individuals directed me to Deacon Michieli next door for a place to sleep. He too readily helped, offering a soft spot on his comfy couch. Of course, there seems to be soft spots everywhere in the hearts of Coloradans.
19 miles/2353 total miles