With 19 days of riding left after today, we are very tired. So having to fight against a 20 mile per hour headwind for 65 miles is rather ridiculous, especially when Kansas is still not flat. Who could have known that getting to Emporia, Kansas from the capital of Canada would be so difficult. Thomas continues to take advantage of his somewhat fresher legs and is biking more than half the miles. Not to be stubborn or anything, but I hope that no one who thought that I was going to do all the biking myself (which was the plan) thinks anything less of this trip knowing that on two consecutive days I've done less than half: even with how tired we are, both Thomas and I could still bike the entire day every day, but it would take a lot longer--when we'd take a break we wouldn't be moving anywhere and we'd have to bike a lot more slowly when we are moving. Our teamwork is not a result of my falling apart (though for that reason I am extra thankful) but a result of our coming to the realization that it just makes a lot more sense. Two is always better than one, as they say.
Dogs once again were on the prowl. One dog chased me for more than a football field today, even though I was always a good hundred feet in front of it or so. Just kept on running. Then when it was done chasing me, it decided to stop right in front of Thomas as he drove the car, then decided to chase a passing minivan all the way back home. What the heck is wrong with dogs??? I got one excellent picture of a dog chasing Thomas on the bike. For any of you dog lovers who don't believe that dogs could be so scary, just wait for our next rest day when we post that picture. Unfortunately Thomas did not have the camera with him when he spent a few miles biking through the forest. The trail he was supposed to be on apparently is not finished yet, so he was biking through grass up to his bike seat and even higher at points. That would have been an excellent picture. Once again, he is damaged. Some pricker bushes got his legs and arm, and one branch got a good hit on his neck.
Now, we are in tornado country. We have been for a few days now, since we've been in Missouri we've had to pay serious attention to the weather. Thankfully we haven't needed to worry much until today. Knowing that we were going to bike through heavy wind today we have been very careful, but we didn't hear about a tornado warning until we arrived at our hotel not too long ago. Living through one tornado warning without being scathed will make my life complete, and it does seem at this moment that we will be fine. Though Emporia is within the tornado warning/watch and severe thunderstorm warning area, the doppler keeps showing that we are a little south of the heavy storm area. So, don't cry for us, Argentina.
I wanted to post an article from the Kansas City Star, but the link is no longer available. But Polaris Project had sent me an e-mail a few weeks ago with an article from May 9th. A 32 year-old Uzbekistanian was arrested and charged for trafficking more than 1,000 foreign laborers into the Kansas City area by fraudulently manipulating a work-visa program, then holding them in slavery. That's a 1,000 slaves in one city at the hands of one person. Unbelievable.
I highly suggest that you go to the Polaris Project website and sign-up for their regular e-mails so that you can read the news such as these little items as we continue to fight against human trafficking. The Polaris Pulse is an extremely useful guide to join the fight. And, while you do that, check out this link to the Polaris Project's summary of what human trafficking is and all the different forms of it: http://www.polarisproject.org/human-trafficking/overview. I've posted many of the things you can find on this link before, but there's no harm in re-posting, eh?