Day 41 – Such Great Heights Revisited
Look at the sky. We are not alone. The whole universe is friendly to us and conspires only to give the best to those who dream and work. – Abdul Kalam
It was a cold night but never got below freezing, so we were grateful for that. In the morning we stopped off at a convenience store for our requisite chocolate milk. While there, we met Richard, who told us to warm up with some coffee across the street, his treat. He gave us a few bucks, wished us well, and was off.
We stopped at a grocery store to get some food when we met Greg in the parking lot. He pulled up near us in his construction truck and for a moment we thought our carts were in his way. He rolled down the window and asked what we were doing. After we told him, he shook his head in disbelief, got out and talked to us for awhile.
Greg was incredibly kind to us. He shared some wonderfully heartwarming stories about traveling out west (a gift vacation given to him and his wife by his sons), offered to give us a place to stay any of the next few nights as we passed through the area if we weren’t successful in finding anything, and insisted on giving us his lunch money. He also told us to call him if we needed help of any kind, and he would come help us in any way he could.
While Tara was buying groceries, Dave, from the campsite we stayed at overnight, pulled up and gave us a guidebook with camping information and maps of Ohio to help us find something down the road if necessary.
A short while later, we walked by the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. We wanted to take a picture of some of the impressive and imposing military aircraft, but thought the better of it. We supposed we looked suspicious enough already without the photography session. We could almost feel the cameras on us as we walked along the premises.
By mid-afternoon, we were in Huber Heights, OH. We were getting very hungry and saw The Heights Café located next to a library. We figured it would be a perfect place to rest and treat ourselves to a warm meal while using either their or the libraries WIFI (it turns out they share WIFI resources).
We had just sat down and ordered our meals when Jeff, the proprietor, saw our carts parked outside and was immediately intrigued by our walk. We explained what we were trying to do, and he loved the idea so much he told us lunch was on him, and then proceeded to tell some of his regular patrons about us.
That’s how we got to meet Abby and her father, Mike.
Mike, who works at the Air Force Base (and confirmed our decision to not take photographs was a wise one), told us he was proud of us for taking a chance on living a dream. He’s traveled the world and had great stories and ideas to share, and donated some money to us for the trek.
Abby, who was fun to talk with, found it amusing that we were interested in the Air Force Base, since in her words, “it’s just where my dad works.”
Jeff let us stay and relax after closing-time. He has a brilliant and innovative mind, is involved in several community organizations, and runs the cafe. We’re not sure when he sleeps, but the Dayton area is lucky to count him as a resident.
We spent the rest of the afternoon trotting along the roadways in blissful shock because of all the kindness and generosity we received all in one day. Despite the fact that we have been the recipients of so much love, help, and munificence during our walk, it’s never something we take for granted and always leaves us feeling so appreciative and fortunate.