5/23/2015 Shertz to Hondo Texas.

I am leaving the Texas hill country into the prairie. I am climbing slowly, and it is a big relief to me to be mvoing out of the humid tropic climate.

SAM 0498

My rear tube blew out again. The valve stem seperated from the tube! It is easier for me to repair the rear wheel by taking off the front wheel, as it lifts the rear wheel off the ground and I can slide it out easier! Sure a lot easier than laying the bike on it’s side. Another good reason to have a center stand.

SAM 0492

On inspection, the Schwalbe tire was developing a slit where the rim met the tire, just like the other one. I have been watching the pressure, what the heck? Could I have gotten two defective ones? Is my use so extrememe that the Schwalbe can’t take it? I have no spare tires… What to do?

SAM 0495

I did the only thing I could. I put a new tube in the old tire, inflated it to 40psi and avoiding bumps rode seventeen miles to the nearest Wal Mart for a new tire and tube.

Major thunderstorms were rolling in by the time I was done shopping. The manager wuld not let me set up a tent in the WalMart grass- “liability” so I rode off in the rain to find the closest field.

I got the tent set up, dancing and swatting off mosquitoes and the rain began in earnest. My phone was flashing flood alert warnings as the gods of lightning and thunder showed their firepower. The rain was roaring down on the thin piece of nylon that was supposed to keep me dry, the fly. It was failing, and water was running into my tent. Soon the floor of my tent was soaked. THen there was a loud whistle, and a train added it’s ground shaking rumble to the din of thunder and rain. I had camped very close to a train track!

My air mattress kept me out of the water. The mosquitoes were having a feast. I lay my towel underneath it, and woke often from a fitful sleep to wring it out. I am so glad that night is over!

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