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  053 07/26/06 Carbondale Crossroads shortcut David  
bike sign
chickory and lace
Illinois Fields

Wednesday July 26, 2006 55 miles - Total so far: 2,670 miles

Today's cycling, though a bit hillier than where I grew up (in central Illinois), still took me through familiar fields of corn and soybeans, and recognizable roadside wildflowers like chickory, queen ann's lace, day lilies, and black-eyed susans. It was a pleasant ride on wide shoulders and easy grades as I continued my shortcut along highway 13, avoiding the narrow winding roads of the mapped route...and staying on an easterly course, saving me from facing some strong winds from the south.

By noon, though, the heat and humidity had risin considerably, the shoulder had narrowed, and the traffic was increasing...especially with large trucks passing me every few minutes. I reached an intersection called "crossroads" near the Illinois/Kentucky border and decided to stay at a motel, hoping the truck traffic would lessen in the morning. As soon as I settled into the air-conditioned room I fell into a deep sleep.

If I Were President:

All roads would have a minimum 4-foot wide bicycle lane with silky smooth pavement.

All motorists would be required to take a bicycle appreciation course.

Highways would have maximum 6% gradients to ensure cycle-friendly climbs.

"Share the Road" (with a picture of a bicycle) signs would be common on every highway.

Bike trails would be built coast to coast and through every city, crisscrossing the country.

A masseuse, specially trained to give massages to cyclists, would be available every 50 miles.

Damn...I was having such a nice dream. Why did I have to wake up!

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