Jul 2, 2014

Posted by Jo W. in | 7/02/2014
Mileage: 50.5

My stay in Omaha, NE was my favorite on this trip so far. We had our first homestay and were hosted by a few families of a church community. The team was divided among the families to stay in their homes. It was the first time our group has split up since the beginning of the trip, so it was kind of weird to not all be together.

Emily Lake and I were hosted by Liz and RJ Neary. They picked us up from the church and drove us to their house. We met their daughter, Nora, and their two labs, Sailor and Cadence. After we settled in, Liz and Nora took us to the pool at their country club. It was so refreshing to jump in a pool after days of sitting in buses and vans. For dinner, we went to Nora's aunt's house to have dinner with four other teammates. It was great to have a home cooked meal and relax in their basement watching Game of Thrones on comfy couches.

Staying in the Neary's home was very nice and relaxing. We felt so welcomed, had our own beds, and woke up to a nice breakfast made by RJ. In the morning, Liz and RJ drove us back to the church, where we met the rest of the team. All the host parents were there to send us off and join us in our morning dedication circle. A few of them even rode the first few miles to show us a route on a bike path. Liz ended up riding to our first water stop at about mile 17! That was pretty impressive, considering she had only recently started road cycling.

My ride group for the day was with Emily Lipsitz, Chelsea, and Ki Young. The first water stop was at a park with a lake and a playground. Of course if there is a playground, we must play on it! We so silly.

A few miles after the first water stop, we turned onto a busy road that did not feel safe. At the earliest opportunity, we pulled off into a driveway and called the van to reroute us. We ended up getting picked up and driven to the lunch stop, which was back on the route and on a safer road with a wide shoulder. It was a good call, because being on the original route was just not safe.

At the last water stop at a gas station, a lady saw our van and came over to us to ask what we were doing. She is an advocate for fighting cancer, so she was curious whenever she sees anything related to cancer. Apparently, her sister is a reporter, so when she found out that we were biking across the country to fight cancer, she ran back into her car to get her sister to interview us. We gladly did so, and took a photo. We will be in next week's local newspaper of Waverly, NE!

The host in Omaha was a church on the University of Nebraska- Lincoln campus. After showering, I explored campus a little, went to a bookstore and a thrift shop. We had a great home cooked dinner at the host. Later at night, we walked around the college town and went to a bar for live music. There's a surprisingly large music scene in Lincoln. 


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