Day 57 – The Body Doth Protest

I like too many things and get all confused and hung-up running from one falling star to another till I drop.  This is the night, what it does to you.  I had nothing to offer anybody except my own confusion. – Jack Kerouac, On the Road

John-Michael woke up feeling a bit “off”, as he said.  He wasn’t feeling horrible, but didn’t feel good either.

After a Pinterest inspired breakfast, we had to tear ourselves away from the comfort and company of our friends.  They sent us off with snack packs, hugs, and love.

James and Marie's snack pack

The ruff life of a dog

Gracie, Tabi, Kirby, Marie, and James

We were on our way through Paris when we heard someone ask, “Are you Tara?”  We turned to meet Stacy, Kit, and Glenn.  They are the parents and sister of one of Tara’s former co-workers, Kirsten.  They were a wonderful and generous bunch.  Kirsten had already given us a gift card for our travels, and then her family gave us a donation too.

Stacy, Kit, and Glenn

The day’s only sunshine

Pam, Connie, Mike, Chris, and Mark

Chris’ brother, Ryan, couldn’t make it down to see us, but sent us an awesome gift instead.  It was the One Ring.  Tara was beside herself with excitement.

Tara with her precious

We were discussing our plans for the rest of the day when our friend, the man, nay, the legend, named Troy pulled up with his family in tow, just to say hi.  Everyone could see that John-Michael wasn’t feeling well.  We had only walked 6 miles, and continuing to walk against a strong headwind seemed increasingly daunting.  Troy volunteered to let us all come back to his house and rest there.  We didn’t want to impose with such a large group, so instead we loaded our gear in his van and told him we would meet him a bit later.  The rest of us went to a fast-food restaurant to relax and chat, protected from the cold and the wind.  We were joined there by more family from the Chicago area.

Cousin Tim and Heather

Elmores in Paris

Who knew they made bacon jerky?! Thanks for the delicious protein, Tim and Heather

Eventually, we had to say our goodbyes.  Mike and Connie drove us to Troy’s house, where we briefly met his parents, and then he let us setup our tent and take a nap.  He actually told us we could sleep in the house, but John-Michael typically sleeps better in the tent, so we climbed in our home away from home and John-Michael fell asleep immediately.  When he woke up, he was feeling better.  The dizziness and nausea had subsided, so we headed in the house to say hello to everyone.  Troy and his wife, Lindsey, had dinner waiting for us.  We gobbled it up while hanging out with the entire family.  The kids’ bedtime seemed like a good bedtime for us too.  We said goodnight to everyone, and Benton said “goodbyeloveyou.”  That sweet sentiment accompanied us as we drifted off to sleep.

Benton

Aubrey, Benton, Troy, and Lindsey