I set up my tent in their yard during a lull in the rain, and dove in just as it started pouring again. I got to visit with Bill and Mary later in the evening when things cleared up for a while. They let me take a much needed shower and sent me off with a bag of food for the road. Mary also offered to drive me to Ohio so I could skip the rest of the PA hills, but I sadly had to decline.
A woman pulled up next to me this morning and gave me the food you see above. She had seen me earlier and thought I could use something to eat, so she went to the nearest store and picked this up for me.
A mile or two down the road another woman pulled over and dashed across the road to hand me some money. "I don’t know if you’ve fallen on hard times or what, but here, buy yourself some lunch."
Chuck invited me in for coffee. I’m not a coffee drinker, so I took a water fill-up instead. Fred and Ralph were really excited about my walk; Ralph showed his admiration with that most universal of gestures: the fist bump. Chuck also said something that I’m quickly coming to understand (I’m paraphrasing): People are the same as they’ve always been; it’s just sensational news coverage (and the human tendency to focus on the sensational) that makes the world seem like such a dangerous place. For the record, this view was excellently expressed by Rosemary in a comment on an earlier post.
Left to right: Shokie (the dog), Fred, Ralph, Courtney, Birdie, Brandon, Chuck