February, page 4
February journal entry 3-26-06 (continued)
It only took a couple of hours for me to get to Breese and find the Knights of Columus Hall. I was there total about 1
hour. I talked with a lot of people about my walk.
As I got ready to leave one guy told me there was a room reserved for me already paid for at the Breese Inn. I was
taken back by their kindness. It was so nice to sleep in a bed & take a hot shower. I would like to say to the people of
Breese, Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your kindness. If I ever decide to move to Illinois, Breese will be
the place. Take care all, Gary, "Keep on Walking, one foot in front of the other."
Journal entry, 2-27-06
Today I had breakfast at PJ's Dinner in Breese. It was a very nice place and the breakfast was outstanding. I met the
workers there and here's their pictures.
After breakfast I started walking from Breese to Carlisle. As I was leaving town, Kelly Schomaker with the Breese
Journal caught up with me for an interview. She really is a great reporter. She was so kind and friendly and had a
unique way of asking questions. It made me want to talk with her all day. But after about 10 minutes, I bid her
farewell and continued on my walk toward Carlyle.
This was a very tough walk. There was no shoulder to walk on and the traffic was unrelenting. I'm afraid tonight my
knees will hurt and keep me awake. I know this walk is tough and I am not complaining. I only want to let everyone
know the good & the bad about a walk like this. Sometimes when a big truck comes by and blows my hat off, or I slide
on the rocks and fall down, I must ask myself is there not a easier way to lose weight. But the pain is real and the
cramps and aches are real. Losing weight is real. My walking across America to lose weight is real. I will suffer many
hardships during this walk. But to stay focused on the end result is what I must do.
I arrived at Cruisers Diner at about 6:15 pm. It seems to be the place to go in Carlyle. Once again the people were
nice. One couple recognized me and came over. We talked for a while & I inducted them into my new friend list. So
here is their picture.
It is nearly 7 pm now and I am writing this Journal. I am getting very tired and still have to find a place to pitch my
tent. I will finish it tomorrow.
It is now the next day. Last night I found a nice quiet spot on a grassy area next to a river. The night went fairly
smooth. I slept real good until 3 am. It started getting cold so I fired up my heater. At day light I tore down and
packed. Gary, "Keep on Walking, one foot in front of the other."
Journal entry, 2-28-06
As I prepared to leave Carlyle I saw a sign that said 14 miles to Sandoval. I noticed it was about 7:15 am and I figured
I could make it before dark, no problem. I was counting on something like a store being some where along the way. I
was wrong. Three miles out of Carlyle I noticed a business open and I went inside to ask if I could charge my cell
phone. They said okay and I charged it for about 20 minutes. They told me there was nothing before I get to
Sandoval. I met 4 really great guys there and we talked about my cross country walk. Here are their pictures:
All I had was two bottles of water and 4 packages of cheese crackers. There was barely a shoulder to walk on. On
each side of the road there was a deep drain ditch. All the fields were only prickly corn stalks, left over from the fall
harvest. It was impossible to sit down or rest. Soon I started feeling tired and hungry. Imagine this, Walking on a
shoulder facing traffic and stepping off onto a steep embankment to allow cars and trucks to pass every 10 to 30
seconds. It took about 11.5 hours to walk these 14 miles. I was beyond being exhausted by the time I got to
Sandoval. When I finally got there, I had to walk nearly 2 miles to the other side of town just to find something open. I
stopped at Fat's. I went inside and asked if they sold food. The owner, going by the name everyone called him, was
Boog. He gave me a bowl of "Green eyed split pea stew." It was so good I asked for another bowl.
Boog said his Stew came from a home made recipe handed down. I can tell you for sure, at that moment it was the
best stew I ever had. I ate 2 bowls. I got to know a few people and took their pictures. My new friend list continues to
I continued on to the other side of town and set up camp across from Hucks store in a nice field. I had a very good
sleep and didn't have to use the heater.
I am getting more and more used to sleeping in the tent. It is becoming like a home to me. My Castle. Take care all,
Gary, "Keep on Walking, one foot in front of the other."
Andy & Nichelle
Kelly Schomaker, With
the Breese Journal
Nice bunch of
new friends at the
"Boog", The owner
of Fat's in Sandoval
from the left: Shawn Walts,
Mike Sronce, Levi Sronce,
Kirt Loddeke. They work at
about 3 miles east of Carlyle
Jack & Vickie Eddinger
Gina Martin &