The storms had stopped at some point early in the morning, and amazingly nearly all of our stuff had dried due to the low humidity. No dew, no nothing. We couldn't wait to get off of the high plains and into the foothills of the mountains, which we could not see yet. To cap off our long week we would need to do a 100 mile day to get into Pueblo.
Our first target of the day was Las Animas, which is Spanish for "the animas". When we were a few miles out Paul informed me that my tire looked low. It wasn't completely full, but it had gotten a puncture and was leaking air slowly. To save time, I pumped it enough to get us into town so that I could repair it while we ate.
We stopped at a small pizza shop and ordered a large pizza that we split. Feeling extra glutinous, we also got carrot cake as a top off. As my tire was in a state of disrepair, I was forced to use the notorious spare that Paul managed to get 6 flats on in 5 days (or whatever it was). A year from now, it'll probably be 12 flats in an hour… the beauty of embellishment. We were in need of a bike shop, and Pueblo was the closest one.
With the repair, and the long day, we would have to make a few long stretches to arrive safely in Pueblo and meet our couchsurfer Jenny by dark. We departed for La Junta, with plans of doing a long stretch after that stop. By the time we got to La Junta, we felt so good, we decided not to stop until Swink. When we got to Swink, we decided not to stop until Rocky Ford, known for their melons.
Unfortunately Rocky Ford's farmers market was not open when we arrived, so we went to Sonic of course. Too much Sonic discussion, I'm through with it. When we left Rocky Ford we intended on doing roughly 30 miles to a town outside of Pueblo.
To stay with the overachieving theme of the day, and with the mountains appearing on the skyline, we kept on riding until a gas station 5 miles outside of the city.
We were pretty exhausted from the week, but happy to be back where people were.
When we spoke to Jenny, she was heading to a barbecue, which she invited us to. We decided why the heck not, and headed to the party, which was close to Jenny's house anyhow.
Arriving in our gear out front, we were a bit of a spectacle. Everyone was very welcoming at the party, and we were offered tons of food and beer upon entry. The gathering was to celebrate a birthday for one of the girls that was traveling as well. They had gotten a pinata for the party, which turned out to be quite entertaining. After a few people got some aggression out, this was all that was remaining.
Later on, when the party was brought back inside, they put some Michael Jackson on Mike's (home owner) vinyl record player. It sounded great, and influenced Paul enough to want to buy one once he returns home. We hit the dance floor for a bit, and just had a good time. It was a fun time for everyone, and just what Paul and I were looking for.
Once people started heading home, we followed suit and went to Jenny's place. Ahhhh, after a massive week, and a good time, we were able to relax with no schedule for the following day. We patted ourselves on the back for the long week and rested easy.
Life was good.