Six May 7-13 Laverne OK - Estes Park CO
May 7, Day 30 Laverne - Seiling OK
May 8, Day 31 Sieling - Kingfisher OK
May 9, Day 32
Kingfisher - Edmond OK
10, Day 33 Rest Day
May 11, Day 34 en route,Oklahoma City OK-Colorado Springs
May 12, Day 35 Rest Day, Colorado Springs-Ft.Collins CO
May 13, Day 36 Rest day, Fort Collins and Estes Park CO
Today turned out to be one of the hardest days so far. All the
(heat, humidity, hills, and wind) were out there, in all of their
We slept in a bit, up at 5:00 am. Jack Frye, our SAG man for today
tomorrow, arrived at the Swinefords a bit late, due to the fog. Jack
in Enid, but drove down to SAG. His wife Jackie is a pHD, but a
neighbor was going to care for her today.
We got on the road about 7:00 am. As usual, we were invited to come
back to visit. Scott wants to go on a cattle round-up.
The first 25 miles went pretty well, despite Jack leaving his
and being unable to start the car without a jump start from a truck
Had lunch in Woodward. Then started SE towards Seiling. We were
amazed at how green everything is. Fields verdant with wheat,
undulating in the wind, trees here and there, and LOTS of road kill
(armadillos, skunks, possums) along the road. Yuk!
Scott and I really struggled today, despite riding with Jack SAGging
gear. The little hills were relentless, the heat 93 degrees, the
about 90 some percent, and wind keeping us from being able to ride
fast, even on level ground. Jack drove into Seiling for us to get
cold water, as our water was warm enough to bathe in!
We finally arrived in Seiling OK "The Crossroads of
Northwestern Oklahoma." Nice little city, but many vacant
buildings. There's a Walmart in Woodward. Need I say more?
Rev. Randy Little of the Methodist Church and the Lions Club footed
the bill for the motel and evening meal. Our hosts in Laverne passed
us along to
Randy. He and his wife Colleen are moving from Seiling soon, to
Ketchum, in Eastern Oklahoma, in about a month. The Methodists
usually move their
pastors about every 4 years.
Scott and I are pretty exhausted after a 75 mile ride. We've
bicycles 471.4 miles over the last 7 days! We're overdue for a rest
that will come on Wednesday May 10 through Sunday May 14.
Jack's coming back tomorrow, to SAG us from Seiling to Kingfisher,
miles. What a guy! Thank God for him, and for the Oklahome HDSA
Hope tomorrow is easier! Pray for tailwinds!
Your weary Road Warriors for HD,
Still Biking For The Cure, with over 1500 miles behind us,
Marie (and Scott)
PS - I am going to have to get a new bike seat while back in
is showing wear on the nose!
After the rigors of yesterday's ride, Scott and I decided we
should be on
the road at 5:30 am, to avoid the heat of the day, and some of the
left our gear at the motel for Jack Frye to pick up later in the
We really didn't ride in the dark too much. Many little up and down
Before the sun came up, I had to be careful to avoid the ever
We rode about 25-26 miles alone, and then spotted Jack's little
Tercel parked ahead. So great to see him! We attached the magnetic
signs, to make his vehicle look "official," and were off
riding. The wind
was out of the E-SE and I began to wonder if we would get a tailwind
when we turned E towards Watonga. Sure enough! Thank God! Prayers
The highway into Watonga was up and down, but with the tailwind once
I hit 32 mpg, Scott maybe higher. A nice wide, smooth shoulder on a
divided hwy, 2 lanes in each direction. Jack was amazed at how
quickly we got into town. We had planned to eat lunch there, but it
was only 10:15 am. We decided to go to the KFC/Taco Bell and get
lunch to take with us, and eat a little later.
The wind continued at our backs, so we were riding about 15 mph,
much above our usual pace. About 10 miles W of Kingfisher, a nice
full-sized car stopped in front of us, and it was Bob Mikes, the
Chapter HDSA President! He was out in this neck of the woods for a
inspection, and made his presence known. That was so encouraging,
reminding me that Scott and I REALLY ARE doing something important,
and all this riding isn't for naught.
The Lions Club of Kingfisher is paying for our night's stay in a
Lions have been a great contact, through Barbara Swineford in
is the third night Lions Club folks have hosted us; hopefully a
contact will host us in Checotah, as we wend our way to Arkansas.
Big day tomorrow. We may have an entourage of folks accompanying us
Edmond, where we make an appearance at the Heartland Health Care
No sign yet of any inclement weather here. We heard of storm that
heading this direction. I pray it doesn't rain on us tomorrow.
I'll be flying back home to Colorado on Thursday, May 11 for our son
Justin's graduation from Colorado State University. I will write a
message each day, but they will probably all come to you all on
Monday, May 15.
With love, the HD Road Warriors, in Kingfisher OK, still Biking For
Marie (and Scott)
"It's a Small World After All ..." It was great to be
able to sleep in this
morning. I went out to find some OJ and non-fat milk, and ran into
from Laverne, Merle Swineford! Pleasant surprize! He was on his way
meeting, and had stopped to use the restroom!
Have thought a lot about God's ministering angels ... 'He makes His
winds, his servants flames of fire' (Hebrews 1:7). We sure had
us yesterday, in the winds, and so many are appearing as servants
trying to fill every need as we ride (food, SAG, hospitality). I
hand of God protecting us, and providing for us.
Two more 'angels' appeared at the motel at 10:45 am or so, to SAG
from Kingfisher to Edmond. Dorothy Hearn and her sister Annie
both from Oklahoma City. Dorothy's husband died of HD years ago, and
her son David is a pHD. Her granddaughter Amy tested negative within
the last year!
The first 20 miles went quickly, the usual Oklahoma terrain of
and downhills. At the 20 mile point, Scott and I were joined by
Chamberlin, President of the Oklahoma Bicycle Society. He guided us
Cashion, where we ate the Subs that Dorothy and Annie had brought,
continued to lead us through the countryside, on back roads, South
East, South then East. When we were riding South, we had a tailwind;
was a crosswind.
Oklahoma's red clay dirt was very evident along the roads, a nice
with the verdant pastures dotted with cattle and oil wells.
A cameraman from Channel 4 met us at one intersection, interviewed
filmed us for the evening news! During the interview, the cameraman
if we knew that we had ridden into "Tornado Alley" at the
worst time of
We rode on into Edmond and to the Heartland Health Care Center, with
Mikes leading us, honking the horn on his vehicle. Heartland was all
out, with multi-colored pennants strung up, like a car agency, and
prominent display banner of the HDSA Oklahoma Chapter. Employees,
residents, media, HD family members, a pHD ... quite a welcoming
committee! A variety of food was available, and royal blue ribbons
for May as HD Awareness Month.
After a tour of this long term care facility, which includes an
wing and a newly opened HD wing, we adjourned to Annie's home, a
unique dwelling with a central courtyard!
It was like a "hen party" plus Scott, with Sue Leck,
Sandra Butler, Dorothy
Hearn, Annie Steiger, and me. We all went out to dinner at the
What a day! Haven't been in a city metro area like this since Tucson
We've biked over 1600 miles, 5 flat tires (1 me, 2 Scott, 2 Mandy),
different SAG support folks, 28 different beds ...
The first half of Bike For The Cure 2000 is over ... 4 days off for
and me. I am flying back to Colorado tomorrow for our son Justin's
graduation from Colorado State University in Ft. Collins. Scott will
some R & R here in Oklahoma City, with shopping, a haircut,
The Daily Messages may run delayed, but they'll still be coming.
Love to all, from the Road Warrior duo,
Marie and Scott
Even though we weren't riding today, we had to get up early, to be at
BrickTown Studios of Channel 9 by 6:30 am.
Scott and I were interviewed by Casey Norton on their early morning
news. He put us at ease, and we were able to tell a bit about the ride,
our involvement with HD, and the Spaghetti Dinner fundraiser at the
Care Center. Sandra Butler, the media contact person for the Oklahoma
HDSA Chapter, did a great job getting us this coverage.
After the interview, we ate breakfast at a Denny's restaurant, then went
back to Annie's to relax. Dorothy has a morning routine with her son
David (pHD) so she took care of that. I was able to contact one of our
sponsors, Chuck Grubb of Vittoria Tires, and he wanted to put a new set
of tires on both of our bicycles. Very generous! We arranged for the
logistics of getting our bikes from the Care Center to "The Wheeler
Dealer," which is close to Annie's.
After lunch, we stopped by the Wheeler Dealer to drop off a
slime tube for my rear wheel, since I had been running a regular tube
no slime since my only flat tire so far, in Las Cruces NM.
We then headed for the Oklahoma City National Memorial, which just
opened April 19, 2000, the fifth anniversary of the bombing. It was a
poignant visit, more so because Annie had been working in a building
adjacent to the Murrah Federal Bldg, and as a nurse, Sue Leck had helped
to treat some of the victims. The memorial consists of a shallow
reflective pool between "bookends" of granite, engraved with
9:01 am and 9:03 am, sandwiching space.
Adjacent were 168 chairs, representing the 168 people that were killed
senselessly. The chair backs were brass, and the bases heavy opaque
engraved with the victim's name. The bases have lights for nighttime
illumination. There are nine rows, representing the nine floors of
former Federal Bldg. The child victims had smaller chairs, and adults
ones. Already the grass around the chairs has been worn off, not even
month after the Memorial opened. A survivor's tree, one that
withstood the fiery devastation, perched majestically on a slightly
level overlooking the green open space. Decorative wreaths, photographs,
and stuffed animals were attached to a chain link fence along the street
side. We also viewed the ceramic tiles, artwork of children who sent
messages to OKC after the tragedy. Across the street was a large white
statue, with its back turned from the Memorial. The words were the
shortest verse in the Bible: "And Jesus Wept ...". Somber,
powerful ... a moment frozen in time.
reminding us for eternity ...
Our second "tourist" stop was the Cowboy Hall of Fame. The
evolved from the Spanish word "vaquero" (vaca meaning 'cow').
The American West starts either at the Mississippi or the Missouri
River. This expansive museum houses so many exhibits it would take a
couple of days to see everything. My favorite exhibits were the
photographs from "The Golden Age of Sport" (1919-1929). I
enjoyed the realistic oil portraits of early cowboys, like Tom Mix, Gene
Autry, and Roy Rogers/Dale Evans "Happy Trails to You." I
enjoyed seeing the saddles of Montie Montana, the roper who rode in the
Pasadena (CA) Tournament of Roses Parade for 50 years, and William
Jackson Palmer, Pres. of the Denver and Rio Grande Railroad and a
founding father of Colorado Springs.
Closing time at the Hall of Fame coincided with when we needed to leave
to get ready for our last event of the day, the Spaghetti Dinner
I found I had an hour to nap, so I took advantage of it.
******End of Part I******
Between yesterday and today, the dining area of Heartland Care Center
transformed into "Little Italy," complete with red & white
checked tablecloths and placemats with a map of Italy. The staff of
Heartland did an
excellent job with the food prep, serving, program, door prizes, and
About 60 folks were in attendance. Maybe 10 pHDs were there, along
various family members, chapter and board members, and others
sympathetic to HD. Jack Frye and his wife Jackie came from Enid. (Jack
is the wonderful man who SAGged us from Laverne to Seiling, and Seiling
to Kingfisher). The spirit of love was very much in evidence in this
After dinner, the daughter of one of the head nurses did a beautiful
language rendition of Celine Dion's song (name escapes me, but it's
Carmen's CD). Randy Wheeler, the facility director, presented Scott and
with a sponsorship donation of $200, and Sandra Butler from the Tulsa
support group also presented a check from a garage sale they held (I
open it, so I can't cite the amount). Bob Mikes, Chapter President, made
few remarks, then wanted Scott and me to speak. I was just overcome
emotion, being in the presence of so many pHDs and their families, I
unable to make any remarks. But Scott did, and thanked all the
caregivers, etc. for what they are doing.
The final phase was a door prize drawing. Nice gifts and services
donated. My number was drawn twice, but I donated back. Amy Hearn,
Dorothy's granddaughter, won a nice lamp. John Meyer, who helped with
publicity, won a framed picture with words. Sue Leck's son Bob's friend
won 3 manicures, and so did Sue's daughter-in-law; quite selflessly,
those were given to Debbie, the only pHD resident so far at Heartland.
A wonderful evening, with so much love. The Oklahoma folks have just
been wonderful to Scott and me. It will be hard to say good-bye. We love
them all already.
Stayed up 'til midnight visiting back at Annie's. Those of you who know
better know I begin to "fade" after about 10:00 pm. Big day
back to Colorado for our son Justin's graduation from Colorado State
University. It will be the first time that Ron, my mother, my sister
niece Kendra, our son Kevin, Justin, and I have been together since
Jenna's wedding in California July 31.
Much love to all,
Your HD Road Warrior about to take a 4 day break from the road,
Another day, another adventure ...
Sue Leck took me to the Will Rogers World Airport, and the timing
perfect! Boarded the United plane, smooth flight over mostly farm
(circles and squares visible from the air, like a giant quilt).
flight, just like clockwork.
Arrived at DIA and had a 3 hour layover. I never know who I'll run
today was no exception. Walking down the B concourse at DIA, I began
to see very tall, very muscular young men with the US Volleyball
logo on their polo shirts. All of a sudden, I see one of the players
I distinctly remember from when Ron and I went to some inter-squad
exhibition games last year. I walked up to George Roumain, and said,
"Hi George'" and shook his hand!
Surprised him, I'm sure. Neat, huh? I loved it.
The flight to Colorado Springs was running almost 1 hour late, so I
Ron to alert him. Had to wait until the pilots showed up. After
hour's delay, we finally boarded for the actual 18 minute flight 60
South. The plane flew low, like 14,000 feet or so. Easy landing. Ron
there when I entered the terminal, so I just kept walking, and
just before he was going through the metal detector security. What a
tearful, happy reunion!
We got in and out of the airport so quickly that we didn't even have
First stop - Colorado Springs Bike Shop, to pick up a new bike seat,
riding gloves, patches for inner tubes, and some GU. Great to see
again. What a dear lady!
On to Abba Optical, to have my glasses checked, since I had stepped
on them getting out of the shower in Boise City OK. After John
replaced a screw and said the glasses were OK, we returned to the
apartment. I napped while Ron went to work out at the gym.
He returned a little after 6 pm, and decided we'd go out to dinner
Souper!Salad!. I called Mandy, our dear SAGger, and invited her to
We had a great time reminiscing over events as we looked at photos
Back to the apartment, after a long day. I didn't realize how much I
my dear husband Ron, and how much of a couple we really are.
Missing the dear folks in Oklahoma, and Scott, but happy to be home
Your Road Warrior for HD, on R&R in beautiful Colorado,
The long awaited day of our son Justin's graduation from Colorado
University has finally arrived!
Busy morning, with stops at the fabric store for some more padding
bike shorts, Rite Aid for some photo reprints, Walgreens for more
the chiropractor. Dr. Holliger found me to be in pretty good
despite 1600 miles of riding. She has been working with me on my
weight, and was pleased that I have already lost 12 lbs! Now the
trick will be keeping it off after the ride is over.
Got some Subway sandwiches, topped off the gas on the car, got Ron
his pop, and got on the I-25 Northbound. Just across from the Air
Force Academy, the cell phone rang. It was Justin, telling us my
sister's and niece's United flight from San Diego to Denver had been
cancelled, and that we should pick up my mother at Denver
International Airport. So ... we altered our course. Got my mother
at DIA; she was very surprised to see us and not Meg and Kendra!
Justin kept us updated on Meg and Kendra, but it wasn't sounding
good for them to get to Ft. Collins on time for the graduation
We checked in at the motel, then drove to Justin's house. He and his
girlfriend Kate had prepared a little buffet for dinner, before the
ceremony. Kevin and his girlfriend Erin arrived shortly after we
The ceremony was at the Moby Arena, about 1 1/2 miles away. Justin
had to be there early, so he left while we were getting ready. The 5
of us drove over
in our Honda Civic. The back seat was reminiscent of circus clowns
in a car.
Erin just had ACL and miniscus surgery barely 10 days ago, so she
keep her knee straight.
Because of my mother's age (80) and Erin's knee, we qualified to sit
seating for "elderly and handicapped." CSU has something
like 7 graduations; this was just one of them, the College of
Applied Human Sciences. Most graduates were in black, a few in gold,
and 3 in green, the colors indicating participation in more
difficult honors programs. The ceremony had two speeches, one by a
student, and one by the University President. Justin's major is
Apparel Design and Merchandising. He was one of the first 100 or so
through the line; about 500 young people graduated.
After the ceremony, Meg called to say she and Kendra had made it to
Collins and were in the motel room. We tried to find Justin, but
unsuccessful, so we drove back to the house where he lives, and
and Kendra to come over. Justin returned, Kevin and went to get some
dessert for all. Finally Meg and Kendra arrived, Ron and Kevin
returned, and we were all together. Three of my mother's 4
grandchildren were there, and her 2 daughters and one son-in-law.
Plans for tomorrow's drive to Estes Park were made.
A long day, but a happy one for all of us, to see Justin graduate.
second of the four grandchildren to graduate with a four year
With love from Colorado,
A full day to enjoy being with family ...
Half of our contingent of 8 had never been to Estes Park, the
resort community in the mountains SW of Fort Collins. That was our
destination, to do a bit of the "tourist thing."
Kevin, Erin, Ron and I went in Kevin's new for him white '93 3/4 ton
extended cab diesel truck, while Meg, my mother, Kendra, and Justin
went in the rental Mitsubishi Galant. We wound our way up the Big
Thompson Canyon to Estes Park, elev. 7500 ft or so. Very touristy,
but fun to look around. The elk come into town; we found many
droppings in the city park. After lunch, Kevin and Erin went to pick
up some new tires from the man who sold the truck to Kevin. Then we
drove around a little more, looking for a Bonsai florist Kevin knew
of, but the business had been transferred to a home. While we were
there, we spotted a little herd of elk in the distance, just
grazing. Another herd was spotted as we drove back towards town for
our final stop, the Dairy Queen.
Then down the mountain to Fort Collins, albeit much more slowly than
Kevin wanted to drive. We all napped a bit at the motel, except
Kevin and Erin, who went to have the new tires installed on the
Dinner at BeauJo's in Old Town Ft. Collins. Plenty of pizza and
all. Walked around in Old Town for awhile, then back to the motel.
Tomorrow will be a transitional day for all. Meg and Kendra fly back
Diego, and then Kendra flies to Portland OR to start summer school
Univ. of Portland. My mother flies to Orlando FL for the AARP
Erin flies to Seattle Monday night, so she and Kevin have a little
together. I fly back to Oklahoma City tomorrow to resume Bike For
The Cure on Monday morning, May 15. Ron goes back to work on Monday,
Justin starts looking for a summer job on Monday, and Kevin returns
to his construction job in Aspen. It was great while it lasted, this
infrequent family time, a time of renewed relationships on the fly.
With love from Colorado, your Road Warrior for HD on R & R,