The next shift from Illinois to Indiana was crazy. Like even crazier then the last shift! It seems like if your odometer gets off it means your whole shift is going to be nuts and that totally proved correct. We were on our toes with turns and finding places to park and cars whizzing by that I didn't take very many pictures! It was even with my Dad too :( We did get a few though. This was my attempt to get a "Welcome to Indiana" sign- ya it wasn't working so well.
Here was a small gathering to assess some physical issues that Troy was having. Riding a little tiny seat across the country can hurt your bum!
Here was Troy's way of handling it...
Pippa was out on the course the same time as Dad and we caught her cheering him on! One of my favorite parts of RAAM is all the cheering that the teams do for each other- they are all so friendly!
The biggest craziness of this shift was when Kelly totally drove the car into the ditch. It could have been much much worse, we definitely had angels looking out for us. In Indiana there are tons of little turn outs where peoples mailboxes are and they make a great place to pull into for a rider transition. We found one, got all settled, and Kelly decided she needed to pull forward a little and then back into the spot to give the other van more room behind us. Noble cause. We pull forward and start backing up when all the sudden the front of our van is totally tilted to the passengers side and the back drivers side tire is in the air! Kelly has quick toes and pushed on the brake right when she felt the tire sink down so there we were, stuck. I had no idea what do and Dad was asleep in the back of the van. Kelly was freaking out a little at this point so we just sat there for a minute to figure out what to do. Kelly was nervous that Dad would freak out if he woke up and we were stuck- but I knew Dad would know EXACTLY what to do so we just needed to wait until it was his time to wake up. He had two minutes left so we were just going to let him sleep those two minutes. Being a crew member you try and let the riders get as much sleep as possible and we didn't want to wake him up an earlier then necessary. We called Chris in the mean time and let him know the situation when all the sudden a cop pulls up behind us. Well, apparently Kelly doesn't do well with cops because she just started freaking out "Is he going to give me a ticket?! I can't talk to him! You have to! He's going to give me a ticket!!" I tell her to CALM DOWN and I'll talk to the cop and he is so not going to give us a ticket- we're stuck! She rolls down the window as the cop walks up and says "Well that's not a good start to a day is it?" haha we've got a comedian. He was a very nice police officer though and walked around to assess the damage. Apparently we had driven into a drainage ditch :( My Dad popped his head up to the voice of the cop and asked what was going on. We told him we were stuck, a police officer was here, and we were good but his time was up so he needed to get ready to get on the bike in about 10 minutes. Another cop pulled up and we got pretty nervous- the look on the cops face made it look like we were going to need a tow truck. The other officer comes around and they decide if Kelly taps on the gas and they push- they'll be able to get us off. He did add to not hit his car behind us. The cops lifted, Kelly gassed it, and out we popped from the ditch- and Kelly didn't get a ticket.
We got out right in time for a very smooth rider transition! Win for us! The rest of our shift we were extremely cautious when it came to where we turned off on the road- we were pretty nervous after that!
At this point, we noticed that Dad was looking pretty weak on the bike and we were starting to get little worried for him. We talked to over with the other van and riders and it was decided that the riders weren't getting enough quality sleep and we needed to give them some. We got a hotel room in the next town and were going to let Dad and Troy each take between a 3-4 hour nap. Troy was going to be on the bike for about two hours and then they would both be off the bike for an hour, then Dad would ride for two hours while Troy got his sleep. We booked the hotel and were on our way when Chris called with a new plan. He had called dad's buddy Keri Ryan and they were pretty nervous that if Dad went into the hotel room we wouldn't be able to get him back out. The most sleep he needed/could have was 2 hours and after that we got into the risky business of body recovery. We pulled into the next transition spot and I was so nervous to tell Dad our new plan. Before he went to sleep he had scarfed down more food then I had seen him eat all week and we think it was because he knew he actually had time to eat instead of putting off the solid food in order to get sleep. He woke up and I let him know Chris talked to Ryan and they were afraid if he went into the hotel he wouldn't come out. He had slept for about an hour of sleep at this point and he had about 30 minutes left before we were going to get him up again. This meant he had more sleep then had been getting, but he wasn't going to have the 3-4 hour nap. He had complete faith in Chris and Keri's decision and went back to sleep for a few more minutes. We headed over to CVS pharmacy to get some caffeine tablets to help the riders on the bike. After CVS we pulled into the back to let Dad take a shower and waited for the hotel van and Troy's van to do a crew transition.
The hotel van pulled up and since we had some time before Troy's van was going to here I hopped into the hotel van with Kyle and Mom and we stopped at a few different stores to get some food for the riders. We ended up with about 6 chicken sandwiches, 7 mango soothies, 3 frosties, a bunch of chicken, and potato wedges. It's amazing how much food they can go through in 12 hours. Some of this was for the crew, but a lot of it was for the riders.
We got back to CVS Pharmacy, crew transitioned Bob's van, and were on our way to transition Troy's van when we realized that we had forgotten Kathy at CVS! Ooops! Sorry Mom!
Our crazy shift finally came to an end, I woke up in the van just in time to catch a picture of this crazy cool Mural somewhere in Ohio.
This was Troy next to me in the van. Always sleepin'. ;)