This was a really great day! We left Green Bay and headed north! As we were leaving the hotel we met Nancy. You know, she is the only person I have met who had H1N1. She got it back in 2009 and is still affected by it today, yet is not afraid of contracting Covid-19. She knows that life goes by too fast to be afraid of living.
We took the back roads all the way to Oconto. It is still blazing hot and not much shade to be found. We try to ride at least an hour before resting, but realistically, we probably stop every half hour. It doesn’t matter now, we are not on a timeline and that feels amazing! On one of our stops, Andrew rode by in the opposite direction, but turned around to say hi. Crazily, he had seen us in Sturgeon Bay when he was leaving work! He had already planned to pack up his bike and head out for the weekend. Someone drove him to Iron Mountain, MI and he was riding back home from there. Unlike us, he was riding over 100 miles a day! I guess you can do that when you are 23 years old! He just made Ken and I feel so optimistic about our country’s youth. He is an engineer at a company in Sturgeon Bay and was so dismayed when he was forced to work from home because of Covid-19. So many young folks we have talked to love the idea of working from home. To us, it seems so isolating, and void of human contact. The phones, computers, and social media, are now the friends of the day. It was uplifting to see Andrew outdoors and talking to strangers…older ones to boot! Like Nancy, Andrew is not afraid to get out and enjoy life, Covid or no Covid…strangers or not. We all so appreciated the conversation and we were thankful that he stopped to meet us, but my only advice to him is the same my mother gave me, “Don’t forget to stop and smell the roses”…100 miles a day?
We rode into Oconto, so tired…so thirsty. Lo and behold, the first place we saw was Wise Guys. Yes, wise guys, eh? It was a local tiki bar sitting on the banks of the Oconto River. Of course we had to stop in and say hello to the locals! Before going in, an older gentleman tooling around town in his electric wheelchair, stopped us to talk. In his younger days, he was a welder working on waterway retaining walls. He had an accident and a large piece of steel crushed his head. He spends his days riding the neighborhood looking for rummage sales. He excitedly told us of all the treasures he finds for such good prices! We couldn’t convince him to come and have a beer, though. I have to say that Wise Guys drew us right in. Everyone was laughing and having a good time, enjoying the weather and the water. We just fit right in and joined the fun for a bit. We decided to have lunch there and ate baked haddock and, of course, had a beer. The menu items in Wisconsin are much different than what you see in North Carolina. Walleye, haddock, frog legs, blue gill! Blue gill? I used to catch those on my little fishing rod as a kid. My dad would have to bait it and take the fish off for me, but we never ate them. We talked to quite a few people. One fellow told us his wife had come home earlier and told him about two people she saw riding bicycles with packs on them! Now, I suppose, he will go home and tell her he met us! We also spoke with Siguorney Weaver! Not really, but she was the spitting image of her! I never even got her real name, or a picture to prove it, but she will always be Siguorney to me. We met Michael up at the bar. What an interesting guy. We saw eye-to-eye on every aspect of life. He has done a lot of things in his 56 years. I am not sure if he is college educated, but you can tell he is one of those people that goes out of his way to learn. I like that about a person. He would not be one to read a headline and assume what the article is going to say, and then never read it. He would have to read the article and then research it to determine its truth. I wish more people would do that! Well, we needed to get to the campground and set up camp, so we said goodbye to the revelers. I would not be surprised if we could be found at Wise Guys again, before we leave town.
Wise Guy’s Menu
2 thoughts on “Day 10 – To Oconto, WI (Total Miles = 209)”
I love your blog — love your stories and adventures. Love Honey Badger II and Traveller, especially that you write about all of the people you meet along the way. What an adventure. Keep the stories coming. Love this. Love you!
I love reading your adventures and learning about the folks you meet! The pictures are beautiful!