Visitors from Phoenix

It’s been a busy week here at Oliverlazenby.wordpress.com (what a good URL, huh?). I found my journal and I will continue the story of my bicycle tour shortly. I apologize in advance to any family members who are thoroughly bored with the bicycle tour ramblings but feel obligated to read them. Don’t worry, it won’t be long now.

A big tree in my yard – which I thought was a box elder tree due to the presence of box elder bugs – finally leafed out and it’s a cherry tree! I also started a new job, but that’s hardly important.

The next piece of news will require me to divulge some information about my my life after bike touring, which I have managed to entirely avoid so far during the course of this blog, but here goes:

I took the back way home to Ellensburg form my new job in Cle Elum writing part-time for a newspaper. It was my first time on the old highway. I was driving slowly and erratically because I was distracted by yellow Balsam Root flowers blooming, llamas roaming a hillside, and golden eagles fishing in the Yakima River. I took a short break from the scenery to look at the road, and there were bike tourists up ahead! I suppressed my urge to honk at them and shout “get on the sidewalk,” and instead drove by slowly and courteously, leaving plenty of space. After I passed the bike gypsies, I pulled over and told them they could stay at my house in Ellensburg.

I think they were hoping to go further, but I told them about my huge house and they seemed intrigued. I gave them my phone number and drove off, wishing them luck in case we never meet again.

I felt almost giddy as soon as I saw the gypsies on bikes. It’s nice to know that someone is enjoying this beautiful country from the seat of a bicycle while the rest of us sinners are working. I did some calculations in my head and figured I’d see them in about two hours , if at all. They were hauling ass, and one hour later they arrived at my doorstep.

Mike, Jordan and Sam are on their way across the country. Mike and Jordan are going to Boston and Sam is stopping in Chicago to fly to England and dig up artifacts near Hadrian’s Wall. They are all from Phoenix and they all started from the train station in Seattle, but first they rode to Ocean Shores. Their adventures so far have included attending a Sounders game, hitchhiking back to Seattle from Ocean Shores, sleeping in an abandoned lot, riding through the 2.3-mile Snoqualmie Tunnel before it officially opened, and much more.

The day I met them, they spent the morning pushing their bicycles through six miles of snow on the Iron Horse Trail at the top of Snoqualmie Pass. They’re desert dwellers and they were wearing floppy canvas shoes too. I don’t think they planned on seeing any snow until the Rockies.

Also, they stopped in my hometown the day before for lunch. I found this photo on their facebook:

Anyone who is familiar with Small Fries in Fall City knows how lucky they are to have made it out of town and over the mountains after this gut bomb.

Anyway, we made a feast and went out on the town. They’re polite young gentlemen and it was great to have them over and hear their stories. They took off the next morning headed for the Columbia River, one of the few rivers in the universe with the gumption to cut through a major mountain pass. By now they should be in or nearing spokane, and they are blogging about their journey at Mikeandjordanadventure.wordpress.com (Sam joined the trip late and didn’t make the URL)

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4 Responses to Visitors from Phoenix

  1. Sue Welch says:

    Oliver,

    Great post and thanks for your hospitality! Nice to meet someone along their trail.

    Mike’s aunt, Sue in NJ

  2. Anonymous says:

    Oliver,
    Thanks so much for hosting our crew from Phoenix. As a mom i am extremely grateful to people like you for taking such good care of them along the road. Nice to read your post along this adventure.
    Jordan’s mom, Nicole

  3. Eleanor and Tim Beger says:

    Oliver,
    Loved reading your post. Many thanks for taking the boys in for the night. They felt so fortunate to stay with you, specially after a rather stressful day of travel. If you ever get to Phoenix, you will always have a place(s) to stay.

    Eleanor and Tim Beger
    (Sam’s parents)

  4. Thanks for the kind words everyone. I’d love to come to Phoenix someday!

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