Day 113–milepost 116 to 88, Highway 62

We had biscuits at McDonalds this morning and headed out.  The sky looked good until we began approaching my drop out point.  There was a storm coming from the south and my start was just at the western edge.  We saw lightning once and heard some thunder so I sat in the car. The rain was light and we saw no more lightning so after a 15 minute wait, I hopped out and headed west.  The rain stopped in the first mile with me getting only slightly wet.  After another couple of miles I changed from a jacket to the wind vest.  You would think that by now my feet would be so tough that there would be no more problems.  Yesterday, though, they were wet most of the day and that softened them up.  Today there is no shoulder and I have to run and walk most of the time on the grainy sloped dirt and rock next to the shoulder.  Many times I shake out my shoes and brush off my socks when I stop for water.  In between stops I just deal with it.  If I stopped every time something got in my shoe I would make no miles at all.  I stopped for the day at 28 miles because we had a long drive back to Parker for the night.  My feet were happy when I took the shoes off in the car.  I managed to prop them up a little for the drive.

There were some interesting sites today.  In addition to the cloudy desert again, we crossed the Colorado River aqueduct that takes water to southern California cities.  It carries a lot of fast moving water.  We saw the deserted town of Rice.  All the buildings have been burned.  There is a fence there that is hung with hundreds of pairs of shoes.  There were also numerous historical markers.  It seems that many (a million or more) of the men who fought in World War II trained at one of the eleven camps in the area.  I took pictures of two of the markers so take a look for the story. 

If you have kept up with my journal you know how important the State Farm agents have been to me.  Two weeks ago, Anita and I came into Globe.  We were met there by Dan Hockersmith, a retired agent, and taken to his home where we met his wife Carol.  I explained to them our needs for lodging as we covered the area north of Globe where there are no towns for 87 miles.  Dan and Carol opened their home to us for four nights as we passed through their area.  They cooked for us, took me out to eat, let me wash my clothes, and then crewed for me on Saturday so Anita could head home.  Then, the next week, Dan called to see if I had found a crew for the Wickenburg to Parker section.  When I told him I had not, he drove 150 miles to Wickenburg and crewed for me the next four days as I did the 110 miles to Parker.  I have had many blessings during this journey.  Dan and Carol are an example of just how blessed I have been.  I went in looking for help and got it.  I also found new friends.  I dedicate today to those new friends.

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