Fellow travelers


Among the dozens of fellow cyclists we met during our transcontinental bicycle journey last fall were three young men on a mission – literally.
Ryan James, Caleb Price and Jonathan Engelhardt, best friends from college, were traveling from San Diego to St. Augustine, Fla. – following roughly the same Southern Tier route that we used – to raise money for a medical clinic in Durban, South Africa, and for a mission trip to that country.
We crossed paths with the trio on Oct. 18 in Brackettville, on the southwestern approaches to the Texas Hill Country, where they and some of our riders had stopped for lunch at a local church, Templo Elienai. The church was raising money that Sunday by serving up plate lunches of carne guisado – Mexican beef stew – with rice, beans, bread, a cupcake and a soft drink – for $6. What a deal!
As we dined while sitting on a stone wall in front of the church yard, we talked with Ryan, Caleb and Jonathan. They were traveling much lighter than we were, carrying only about 20 pounds of gear and — instead of camping — staying overnight at churches along the route. They had left San Diego on Sept. 28, eight days after we did, but were riding 80 or more miles per day and had caught up with us.
Later in the day, one of our group, John Vandevelde, encountered the trio on Texas Ranch Road 334 as they bore down on him from behind.
“They rode a pace-line and welcomed me into it, even let me lead for a short while,” John wrote in his blog. “I hung in for almost 20 miles until the ‘guisado power’ wore down and my legs began to fail on me. Maybe in truth they slowed some for me, but it was great!”
That night, John found that Ryan, Caleb and Jonathan had posted on their Web site some comments about meeting members of our group, including a reference to riding with “John the Speedster.”
“That posting by my road friends made me feel so good, it may make my week, not just my day,” John wrote.
Kami Kitchen, another member of our group, learned that Ryan, Caleb and Jonathan had created a video montage of their trip. She posted a Facebook note with the link to the video on YouTube.
Kami and Reg Prentice, another member of our group, make a cameo appearance at 2 minutes and 14 seconds into the video montage. Check it out.

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1 Comment

Filed under Americana, Cycling across America, Journeys, Texana

One response to “Fellow travelers

  1. Pingback: Daily News Roundup January 26th – Texas Bicycling « Texbiker.net

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