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HRH Truck
hubcap and bottle
Pan Am plane

Thursday June 29, 2006 39 miles - Total so far: 1,178 miles

Today was the first day that we "broke camp" in total darkness. Gene discovered that the best place to hold his flashlight was in his mouth to free up both hands, and I especially enjoyed the quiet morning...ha! For yet another day we started pedalling in darkness to beat the heat. Our morning ride was uneventfull except for one thing...some monster hills. For the first time we experienced several very steep upgrades in excess of 10% that were unridable on our loaded bikes (each bike and gear weighing around 100 lbs). The worst hill required pushing our bikes for approximately one mile...hope we don't see any more of these!

In the afternoon, however, we made an amazing discovery. I stopped to photograph an old pickup stuck in a dry wash and then spied a rusty hubcap lying beside it. My curiosity was aroused and I slid down the bank and retrieved the hubcap. On further examination I could faintly see the initials HRH embossed in it. After pondering these initials for awhile we realized it must be the initials of Howard H Hughes. It is a known fact that Howard made frequent forays into the desert to rendevous with mysterious women. It is a little known fact that he was once driving his truck and was caught in a flash flood along with a female companion (ala Chappaquidick!). We also found a bottle of Dr. Pierce's Golden Antiseptic Ointment in the truck. Everyone knows of Howard's germ phobia, so this bottle is further evidence that we must have stumbled on his missing truck. The irrefutable piece of evidence though, was found hanging from the truck's rear view mirror...a toy airplane emblazoned with the Pan Am logo (see photo). We think it best for Howard's legacy that the location of his truck remain with Gene and I...we know we have your understanding in this matter. However, I invite any of my family who may have further knowledge of this unfortunate accident to post a message on the forum page.

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