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2010 Ride

“INDIANA WANTS REAL CHANGE” (Wednesday, November 3, 2010)

The REI lightweight down sleeping bag, with a felt liner insert, was just enough to keep me warm throughout the night, but woke up to ice on the tent fly and frost on the windshield, so packing up wasn’t fun. The sun quickly warmed things up, though, and it ended up being a glorious day for riding. Marti had already shipped my cold weather gear to my family in Cincinnati, so I’ll be trading out gear there for the final push to DC.

Rolled into The Corner Restaurant in downtown Rushville for a hearty breakfast, where folks were curious to know where I was headed in the trike. Lots of enthusiasm for a green energy “moon shot,” like pretty much everywhere I go. William Goin, President of the Rushville City Council, stopped by my table to say hello. The waitress then threw me for a loop when she told me “the guy over there” was buying my breakfast. Thanks, Al Tackett! Thanks, too, to the gentleman who tipped me off to a less hilly, more bike- friendly, route to travel on his way out the door. After breakfast, rolled down to the offices of the Rushville Republican for a quick newspaper interview.

http://rushvillerepublican.com/local/x2073125204/Starting-a-green-industrial-revolution-in-a-yellow-tricked-out-trike/print

Then pedaled over to the home of Mike Sweet, who I had also met at breakfast, to check out the “green” addition to his home. He’s doing his part to make the world a better place by using reclaimed materials whenever and wherever he can. Way to lead by example, Mike.

After that, wanted to visit the Booker T. Washington school, a national award-winning historic landmark, so pedaled down the road to see it. Now a community center, this historic renovation is the culmination of a long-time dream of William Goins. When I got there, I saw it also housed a Head Start program, so poked my head in the door to ask a teacher if the kids might want to see the trike. Boy, were they excited.

Discovered this homemade wind turbine at Elm Valley Farms near Connersville. Later learned it was built from the ground up by Matt Sherck (and his dad), who likes the idea of making his own energy and being self-sufficient.

Down the road, stopped into the Connersville News-Examiner for a quick interview:

http://www.newsexaminer.com/articles/2010/11/04/local_news/doc4cd233a70e29b730664291.txt

Later grabbed a sandwich at Subway in Liberty, where I want to give a shout out to employee Heather Harsh, for covering my lunch. Then did a phone interview with Ohio University’s College Green Magazine as I pedaled out of town:

http://www.collegegreenmag.com/alternative-energy-advocate-pedals-cross-country-in-ride-for-renewables

The gears were popping worse today, making it hard to get into a groove, but still managed 64 miles. One of my side trips today was to the beautiful Black Covered Bridge. The iPhone battery died just as I was approaching the bridge.

There I ran into Dick & Leslie Haid out sightseeing, who asked if I had seen the low wind speed wind turbine just installed at Miami University’s Ecology Research Center. I hadn’t, and the sun was already dropping low, so they kindly offered to shuttle me the few miles up the road to see it. I’ve seen lots of wind turbines over the years, but never one quite like this. I’ll be interested to learn more about how it performs.

Was really hoping to make Cincinnati to be with my family tonight, but too many miles to go. Briefly considered spending the night at Hueston Woods campground for old times sake (I visited the park as a kid growing up near here), but decided instead to take up climate activists Don Pestana and his wife, Carla, on their generous offer of a bed, a hot shower and dinner. Thanks, Don and Carla! Their teenage son, Anderson, was bubbled over with ideas on how to engineer the next iteration of the rocket trike. There’s something about the trike that really sparks the imagination.

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2 Responses to “INDIANA WANTS REAL CHANGE” (Wednesday, November 3, 2010)

  1. Dan Williams says:

    You are doing a great thing and your journey is very inspiring! I grew up in Rush County and saw the story in the Republican today and had to check out the website. Your travels kinda reminded me of my days traveling with my brother in his ’72 VW bus following the Grateful Dead around the country. Met many great and generous folks and we tried to spread the word of recycling, conservation, etc. Have a safe and enjoying journey and keep up the good work!!

  2. Don Petana says:

    Thanks for stopping. It was great to get to know you and exchange ideas. The folks met with were all very glad they got to hear from you. I also had 3 people ask me “did you see that yellow bike thing-y the other day? What was that all about?” I tell them it’s about the future. Go Tom, 100% X 2020!

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