We enjoyed a day off with as much alone time as possible in Sioux Falls, SD. After a hard week of riding, 24 hours a day with the same 2 people, and constantly sweating, you begin to get annoyed simply by how the others go about their daily lives. We try our best to love each other in spite of frustrations but on this trip the cure is often a small break from one another.
We rode out of Sioux Falls on the 9th. It was only 15 miles or so into the day when we hit the state line, and already we liked Minnesota more than South Dakota. We also noticed that people in Minnesota really like to hear how much better it is than South Dakota. We ate lunch outside the grocery store of a small Minnesota town and just about everyone that passed by started talking to us. We loved how friendly this state was but expected to have dry mouths by the end of it from all the chatting. Our plan was to ride 45 miles into Worthington but at 45 miles we found ourselves riding under a big black cloud. About a mile ahead of us, it looked like the cloud was touching the ground. Not quite sure what that meant weather wise, I just knew I didn't want to ride through it. We voted to end our day early and find shelter before the rain hit. No more than 5 minutes into looking for a place to sleep in the small town of Adrian did a family drive by and ask if we needed shelter. This sort of thing happens a surprising amount. Also, just keep saying yes. They let us into the fire station, gave us sandwiches, cots to sleep on, and the remote to the TV. The rain came 20 minutes later.
In order to make up for our short day we vowed to riding 80 miles on the 10th. The road was flat and full of corn. We pulled into Fairmont, MN around 7:30 pm and stayed with our first Couchsurfing host. They were a nice family that sternly reminded us that we "are guests in [their] house and should act like it!" We have quoted that line at least twice a day since it happened, we'll need to send them a card thanking them for the new inside joke.
We started our ride on the 11th by playing "Go DJ" by Lil' Wayne to celebrate Kyle's 25th birthday. I have never been so glad it was someone else's birthday. All day we were the recipients of wonderful gifts. Glad I got to ride the birthday coattails. We were going to meet up with our friend Justin's parents on Albert Lea for the evening but they ended up not being able to make it down from the Twin Cities. They surprised us with a hotel room to make up for it. Finding this out in the beginning of the day made the 60 miles fly by. Kyle's mom gave us money to go to dinner and our friend Thomas sent us money to go get drinks. Best Kyle's birthday I've ever had.
Photos: entering Minnesota, me watching TV at the fire station, Kyle posing next to his cake in the hotel room