I didn't get a chance to post this yesterday, I ended up being a bit busy, and I was tired from not getting a good sleep the night before during a thunderstorm.
Tuesday afternoon, I met up with a couple tourists who started in New Orleans as well, and are heading up to Canada. Check out their blog here http://propertension.blogspot.com/. We met up again at the same campground that night. We played some cards, drank some beer, then went to bed. I had my rain fly up in my tent because we expected storms. The inside of my tent was so hot though because the fly cuts most ventilation, I half removed it before the storm before the inside of my tent got drenched in sweat. Once the storm started, I just quickly got up and put it back on, it really cooled down at that point anyways, so I didn't mind. Half way through the night though, I woke up because my feet were soaked through my sleeping bag. It turns out that my rain fly slide to the side a little bit and one of the corners of my tent at the feet wasn't covered at all! (rookie mistake) The inside of my tent was pretty soaked and at my feet was a big puddle. It was still raining too. Luckily, the camp site on the trace had a building with a porch. I grabbed my sleeping bag and stuffed everything that was in my tent into the pannier I was using as a pillow, and I just bailed the tent and went to sleep on the porch under the roof. It wasn't too bad after that. I had to kinda avoid the big wet spot at the foot of my sleeping bag, but that's about it.
Yesterday morning, I woke up and start to roll my bike up the small hill to where the porch was, so I could lay everything out to dry for an hour before leaving. And I realized that my bike had a broken spoke!
Sometimes when a spoke breaks, you can just snip it, or tie it down so it doesn't get caught on anything and keep going to the next shop. But this instance threw off all the tensions in my tire and it developed a nasty warp. Luckily I have extra spokes! Unluckily, the spoke that broke was on the rear wheel, up against the cassete that houses the gears. I don't have the tools to remove a cassete. I waited around a few hours for the information center building, which was the porch I slept on, to open. Once it did I asked the employee if they know anywhere I can get this done, or get the tools to do it myself! They called up a friend who happily grabbed his toolbox and drove it out to where I was. He had all the tools I needed, but didn't know how to do what I needed to do. He ended up leaving after not long and had me leave his tools in the information center when I was done.
After a while, I finally figured out how to remove the casette and replace my spoke. It then took me almost another hour slowly adjusting it to remove the warp since I didn't have a bike shop to go to this time. My wheel is still a bit warped, but it's minor and it'll get me to the next bike shop to have a better job done! After this number of incidents in such a short time I figured that I must be doing something wrong here, either that or I just have too much to carry. So I stayed an extra day in Kosciusko and went through all my gear. I filled up a usps box with everything I decided I probably don't need and shipped it off home! I also spent some of the afternoon continuing to adjust my bike to make sure it's good.
I'm making a quick run to Walmart this morning to pick up some meals I can take with me, then I'm off!