Weirder Things Have Happened...

Woke up this morning after a good night's sleep. Had a long conversation with someone I hadn't talked to in awhile and I laughed a lot and went to bed feeling happy, and invigorated.

I biked 56 miles with a short lunch break along the side of the road (Subway sandwich that I bought last night). It rained for the first 10 miles, but it cleared and became a beautiful day. By 2pm it got hotter, but I made it to Sterling, today's destination by 1pm. It was humid in the morning, but my body never got too hot cycling today. That's such a change from the past week. To be at a normal temperature all day is a luxury. And, the landscape is getting greener and prettier. Things are looking up. I won't mention the wind or this blog entry will still be full of 4 letter words. 

So, I need to give you some context. As I mentioned in my last blog entry, I have been to Sterling Kansas, many years back (possibly 4-5) to do a CDC training (HECAT) for about 50 educators sponsored by the County Health Department here. The training was held on Sterling College Campus. Remember this detail.

About 3-4 summers ago, CDC also hired me to facilitate the Systems Thinking Systems Changing Simulation by The Network Inc. I facilitated the simulation in NYC for about 175 educators from about 25 Urban School Districts. The event was the Urban PE Summit and Portland Public Schools (PPS) sent a team (which I was thrilled about!). We even got to go to Gracie Mansion and meet Mayor Bloomberg... but that's another story. One of the PPS team members was Larry Dashiel, a Regional Administrator. We had yet to cross paths prior, but both had many colleagues in common. We hit it off and became friends. We now meet for breakfast at the Tin Shed (my last meal/breakfast before taking off on this trip) regularly to catch up about work, family, people we have in common. Larry's son, Christian lives in Sterling, Kansas. So, he told me to let him know when I was coming through. I got in touch with Christian a few weeks ago and lo and behold, he's the Chaplain at Sterling College (and where Larry, I hear, is a college football legend still!). Christian arranged for me to stay in Cooper Hall, the renovated and beautiful admissions building on campus in a guest room on the top floor. When I pulled up on my bicycle, I couldn't believe it. Cooper Hall is where my HECAT training was years ago. I'm currently sitting on a king bed in a gorgeous room 3 floors above where I facilitated an all-day HECAT training to 50 educators. In Sterling Kansas. The chances... it blows my mind.

 Bike in front of window in my room at Cooper Hall on Sterling College Campus

Bike in front of window in my room at Cooper Hall on Sterling College Campus

 Cooper Hall, my room is top, center below turrets. If you look carefully you can see my bike. I'm looking for a prince, know one?

Cooper Hall, my room is top, center below turrets. If you look carefully you can see my bike. I'm looking for a prince, know one?

It was nice to have an afternoon 'off'. I walked around the small, but pretty campus, got some lunch fixing's for tomorrow, got a pedicure (purple with sparkles on top... very princess-y), and walked over to Christian's beautiful home. I was welcomed by their three kids (Hannah, Zachary and Ellie, ages 2, 4, 7 respectfully) and their two large dogs. We had dinner together and then they were all off to gymnastics! I walked back to campus and I'm enjoying this amazing view out my half circle window at the tip top of this castle-like building. I wish the USA/Costa Rica game was on TV... apparently Fox Sports Midwest cares more about baseball then soccer (what the?!?), but Dad is texting me updates since my parents are actually at the soccer game.

My body seems to have healed from the brutality of the heat and wind from the past few days. Since both have let up a bit (the heat, not really the wind), my body feels a bit more normal. I really appreciate my body every day. It's amazing. I mean... it's working so hard to pedal me across this country. I feel so fortunate to have a wonderful physical body that does what I want it to do and is overall completely free of pain and healthy. Unbelievable. 

I talked to a friend today who is undergoing chemo treatment. She feels great (after the 4 days after her first treatment). And, she told me she wakes up everyday feeling lucky to feel good. I told her, we should all do that. Everyday. Love your body. I definitely cherish mine more than anything right now. 

 Now you can see my bike! 

Now you can see my bike! 

 You get really excited about weird things in Kansas. Like, trees on your right that block the wind coming up from the south. It means you can cycle more efficiently for those 500 yards or so...

You get really excited about weird things in Kansas. Like, trees on your right that block the wind coming up from the south. It means you can cycle more efficiently for those 500 yards or so...

 I realized I hadn't posted a Kansas cornfield photo yet. Can't deprive my readers!

I realized I hadn't posted a Kansas cornfield photo yet. Can't deprive my readers!

 You know you're in Kansas when... there's horse poop in the parking lot.  

You know you're in Kansas when... there's horse poop in the parking lot.