Lewellen NE, 19 Miles
I didn’t leave until noon today because of trying to get my computer sent into HP and so it became a very hot trek today. It was in the 90’s and the heat, my hernia’s and my chigger bites, I am about ready to lose my mind. I finally arrived 8 hours later at my destination but because it is on the far eastern edge of the Mountain time zone, it was dark by the time that I arrived. My double hernia’s literally stopped me in my tracks, no less than a dozen times today and I am in pain. That usually subsides as I rest for the evening and so I hope that I will feel better in the morning.
I am in the middle of rattlesnake country and saw 3 dead rattlers on the road today. It was right here that Brigham Young said that he saw the largest rattlesnake that he had ever seen, and a journal entry from my gggg grandmothers company talks about an older woman who got bit by a rattler right here and her leg swelled up to 4 times it regular size. I ran a relay race in 1978 through this area that was commerating the Mormon Trail as an historic landmark and I remember even back then how many rattlers that there were on the road.
Remember me talking about Robert Blessin? I met him and his family in Gothenburg at the camp and they were the most wonderful people. One of the guys that you feel comfortable with immediately, well I saw him again in Southerland, where he lives, and he took my escorts to his home so they could stay with him. He also brought me a dish of his homemade ice cream that evening. Well I am a long way from where he lives but low and behold, Robert shows up out in the middle of nowhere again… this time with four ears of corn, some cherries and four plums. He made some excuse on how I could have found these all along the road and handed me this awesome gift. I think that his last name is his for a reason, but it is missing the G. It will be good to have him as a new friend.
Also, today I met “Fat Jeff Todd”. I know, I know, it’s not nice to call people fat, but that is what he is called and he said that a couple of times. First impression of Fat Jeff is that he would make a great actor in a biker movie. He is over 300# (I think), his beard is braided and he has what he calls a “no-hawk”, not a mohawk, but a nohawk because he has the cut for the mohawk but his hair is so thin that there isn’t much there for the hawk part, but what a great guy! We took photo’s and talked and I found out that he is a wealth of historical info on the area and that he used to work at Ash Hollow, a state historical site on the Oregon Trail. He then invited me (us) to dinner at his home with his parents in Lewellen and said that he would fix things that were of the time and indigenous, so when I got on the edge of town, I heard this bell ringing, it was Jeff ringing the bell in his backyard because it was dark out when I got here. We came into his parents wonderful home which was built by Jeff’s great grandfather and he and his mom served buffalo burgers (and they were enormous), baked potato, sweet corn and cherry and mulberry pie from their trees. It was a treat beyond belief. My body really needed the calories. PS. I also discovered that Jeff played for Univ of WY football. It’s wonderful just meeting all of these great people along the trail.
Well I am using Jeff’s computer to write this blog tonight and it’s already 10PM and I have to go put up my tent. We are supposed to have severe thunderstorms tonight and so I’m not looking forward to the excitement… and I have to go find a way to deal with this pain that isn’t going away.