Daily Archives: July 2, 2009

Jeannie Benton’s “YouTube” Video update about her ride and OLT- July 1st in Mountain Home, Idaho

Jeanie 019

Hello everyone!  It is Day 10 of the 50 days across America.  We left from Boise, ID to Mountain Home, ID.  We had a very, very easy day of cycling today, I have to admit.  It was actually what we would call a cakewalk.  It was only 50 miles, one of the shortest days we’ll be doing for the whole trip.  There was very little climbing.  We were on a bike path route for a while along the river, which was really pretty.  Then we got onto Route 84, which the shoulder was very smooth and beautiful for 20 miles or so, really lovely, and there really wasn’t  much traffic out there today.  For the second half of it the road was pretty bumpy, lots of trucks went by, but it was still really safe.  The truckers were really nice today, thank you, thank you truckers out there!   What was really cool for me to see, because we only have single or double trucks out my way on the East Coast in New Hampshire and Massachusetts, I got to see triple trucks today.  I saw Federal Express and UPS trucks with triple trailers, so that was really cool to see.

There was no really difficult terrain to ride, so we just kind of pulled in easy today.  We had a lesson on how to change a tire, which I’m still learning.  I kind of know how but I haven’t physically done it.  I know a lot of women who cycle a lot know how to do it, so I’m really kind of behind the 8-ball on that.  I haven’t really fully learned how to change a tire yet.  Fortunately so far I have not had a flat, so I’m very grateful for that.  Thank you for any of you out there who are praying for me, I really do appreciate it!  I know I’m going to get one, I just hope it’s not going to be in a dangerous situation.  A regular flat is just a flat, and that’s okay.

This is a very, very nice place here in Mountain Home.  It’s really nice to be here.  I had a wonderful interview with a man named Michael from the Mountain Home newspaper.  It looks like that will probably be in the paper sometime soon, talking about OLT and hoping that people will go online and see what it’s all about and pledge for all our wonderful heroes and military families.  He himself has actually served in the military with the Air Force, so it was wonderful to see that he has done that.  I really thanked him and said that it was a real privilege and honor to meet him, and an honor for me to be representing all of you while I’m out here riding.

Tomorrow we have a longer day.  We have 97 miles to do tomorrow on Day 11, July 2.  We’re heading to Twin Falls, ID.  We will be doing some climbing, and we will have some difficult downhills.  Downhills are not always so easy.  It might sound like it’s great that we go down, but between traffic and rough roads and the pressure on the shoulders and the hands because of having to brake a lot, it’s still something that we have to be really careful of.  That’s something to never take for granted.  So while the climbing uphill is hard, on the downhill we still have to be really, really careful.  But so far everyone’s been fine and safe and we’re all very grateful for that.

I just want to say I’m so grateful for people’s prayers for my dad.  He and my mom are heading home from New York City tonight, getting back to Syracuse.  I’m really thrilled beyond measure that he’s healing well, and I pray he will continue to do so.  I actually go through Liverpool, NY on the 45th day of the ride.  I grew up in the Liverpool/North Syracuse area, and I’m hoping to see some of my old high school friends as I go through.  I hope if you’re out there following along that you’ll meet me and I’ll let you know where I’m going to be so you’ll be able to meet us when I come in.  I’m very much looking forward to seeing my family.  My sister Sue lives out that way, and my parents, and the Listiak family on my dad’s side, wonderful relatives there to be able to see.  That’s down the road, but it’s kind of neat that I happen to be going through my hometown area where I was raised as a young girl.  Besides the fact that I’m also riding home, because when I get to Manchester, NH on the last night before we go to Portsmouth, I live in the Bedford/Manchester area.  There’s only one other rider who lives in New Hampshire, so I’m one of the few riders who are actually riding home.  That’s very exciting to me!

I’m looking forward to the trip tomorrow.  I feel really strong, the rest in Boise did me a lot of good.  My backache is completely gone, I feel really strong, and I felt really great on the bike today, so that’s really wonderful.  I want to say hello again to all of my children, Aubrielle and son-in-law Alec, my son Justin, and Joshua, and Christina, I love you dearly and I’m so grateful that you’re my children.  I’m thankful that you’re so excited for me and that you’ve been so supportive.  I love you dearly.  I want to give my love out to Raymond, my boyfriend, I miss him very much and I thank him again for being so supportive of me and being so happy for me that I’m doing this.   He’s just been everything more than wonderful that I could ever ask.  I have lots of friends back home, and in particular I really want to thank the Patrick family, Beth and Leo Patrick, and Quinn family, Mary and Mike Quinn, and my friends Sandy and Henry Garzia who have been wonderful dear friends, and of course the Dunkles, Diane and Steve, who have really been there for me and wonderful friends.  They’re the ones who introduced me to Operation Life Transformed.  Also the Strattons, I could go on and on with so many different friends.

Thank you to all of you for following me, for your encouraging words.  I’m going to say goodnight, we have to get up at 5 o’clock in the morning, so I’m going to be getting to bed soon.  I appreciate everything.  This is the most exciting thing I’ve ever done in my life, it is just an amazing thing to do something that’s bigger than yourself, and just see what can happen when we set our mind to do something.  To see a dream come true, it’s really an awesome experience.  I’m very grateful that I’m able to do it.  I’m grateful for all the people who have supported me and loved me all along the way for me to get to the place where I am now to be able to do this.  Thank you to the troops out there, I hope that you’re getting these messages and I hope that you know how much I love you and appreciate you and thank you for what you’re doing for our country.  I thank you for all the things you do that you never get thanked for, and the wives and children who live lives of missing their dad, I just really appreciate all that you’re doing.  Thank you to all the military leadership, from the officials in Washington to all of you who are at the different sites and different military installations.  I hope you know how much we as Americans appreciate you.  I’ll probably be saying that again and again, but I want you to know that I pray that God will really bless you and bless your lives and bless your families and your children.

Good night and God bless you all.


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