June 1st, 2019 / (78km/48mi)

I start late today. There’s no need to rush out as it’s anyways just 78 kilometers to my next stop in Elizabethtown (Kentucky!).

My ride again gets me thru rural areas with a few farms and houses spread out along the road. When I follow the main “highways” or roads, traffic is dense with a lot of weekenders dragging their house boats, speed boats or zodiacs around behind their pickup trucks. There’s quite some big connected lake system out here, but you can never see it from the road. I would have to go off the route left or right for a few miles – but I don’t feel like it.

I’m slow today, changing rarely between heads down and watching the rural scenery just pass left and right. It’s also hot again today and the sun is stinging. But as long as it doesn’t rain I won’t complain about anything weather.

I meet a guy from the Netherlands today who’s riding his bike the other direction. He’s on the road for 3 weeks now and started in Yorktown, VA, which is the eastern end (or start) of the TransAm route. He’ s heading towards Astoria, Oregon. We exchange infos about the route and what’s to come, how the weather has been and the traffic and people we met. The usual “cross-country bicyclist” smalltalk. We shake hands and leave in opposite directions.

Elizabethtown is a small town set aside the crossing of interstate 65 and Hwy 62 plus a few other highways joining close by. As such it emits the charm of the usual line-up of Motel 6, Motel 8, Days Inn, Best Western, you-name-it-motel-chain intermixed with McDonald’s, Burger King, Arby’s, Wendy’s and all the other fast food chains, namely no charm at all. This could again be anywhere — pick the deserted location of your choice — in the US. It always seems to me that those cities, towns, collections of franchise chains, call it what you want have been distinctively designed to exterminate any form of life other than those getting around in a V8 steel monster. I think European towns and cities have a lot over these places here. Most notably: character – and a remaining embracement of people moving around on two feet or on a bike.

When I arrive around 3pm, I realize that I must have switched timezones again. I’m now 3 hours ahead of California as I must have silently made into Eastern Time Zone on the way. Let me emphasize that I am now daytime-wise ahead (!) of California. Looking at recent legislation here in Kentucky: centuries behind! Welcome to the dark Middle Ages!

Yes, I know, I should stop bitching around. But is it my fault that they make it so damn easy here?

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