Rodney had taken us in and let us sleep in his spare room the night before. He drove us back to the laundromat where he’d picked us up Wednesday. On the drive, we reflected on the journey so far, and thought about what was still to come (thanks for hosting us Candice, and good luck on your trip, Rodney!).
We passed through lots of small towns, and we saw lots of people this Thursday preparing for the Labor Day weekend. We were mostly on quiet roads, with wide enough shoulders.
We saw more funny signs than usual. Donat Road was right outside of Krumsville! These two signs are literally right next to each other.
Our last week has been so hot, perhaps the hottest on the walk. We probably look very miserable in our giant sun hats and sunglasses, struggling for each step. A water delivery truck driver even pulled over on the side of the road and tossed us two cold bottles! We mostly used them as ice packs on our faces and necks.
It turned out the campground we’d hoped to stay at Thursday night did not allow tent camping (RVs only!), so we had to go with our backup plan: knocking on a stranger’s door and hope for the best. The first house pretended they weren’t home, so we walked a little bit more down the road. Our second try, a very kind older man quickly stated “of course” when we asked if we could camp in his backyard!
Waking up in a stranger’s backyard is strange. We have to get ready quickly and quietly. But it’s not the most unusual place we’ve woken up. This morning we even heard one of the family members start their car and drive away before we were out of bed (about 5:45am)! No time to sit and eat breakfast, so we ate our two remaining granola bars as we walked.
We were looking forward to Friday for days, as Rebecca’s aunt had surprised us by booking us a room at a bed and breakfast in Bethlehem!
It was our first B’n’b so we had to make the most of it:
It was supposedly haunted too (well, two of the rooms in the mansion, but luckily not ours). Tim kept jumping up and screaming/pointing into corners of the room and behind Rebecca to try to scare her.
Bethlehem is also home to Lehigh University, where one of our good friends in Chicago graduated from, so of course we asked her the best places to eat. Thanks for the tip, Sarah!
Saturday we were looking forward to seeing the Crayola Experience, and grab some cool postcards while we were there. The cashiers were also very excited for our trip!
After walking through the nice downtown of Easton, we were ready to cross into our penultimate state: New Jersey!
A car pulled over on the side of a semi-busy road during the pm rush hour. His name was Bill, Wild Bill, with his son Tom. They were both cyclists, and Wild Bill was very impressed with our young adventurous spirits. He told us his dream of a long bicycle trip, and was happy we were realizing ours.
We planned on paying for a motel since there were no campgrounds or parks for us to stealth with our tent. When we got to the motel, we were told there were two rooms left, and we got to chose a carpeted room, or one with hardwood floors. We choose the latter. As we started to unpack, the front desk clerk came back and told us the rooms had been previously reserved!
We momentarily panicked. After giving us some time to repack, we thought we would ask her if we could set up our tent and camp behind the motel. This was a first for us (and probably them). After we explained we weren’t weirdos, and we were walking across the country for a cause, they happily agreed! It was a great relief, even if it was one of the strangest places we’ve camped all trip!
Today(s) we walked through:
Tim: 51,303; 51,757; and 50,086 steps
Rebecca: 56,295; 55,541; and 54,289 steps
3,193 miles finished