Roughly 2,300 miles into his run across the country, and facing the most severe heat in decades, Glenn Caffery worried more Wednesday about the roofers he spied on his trek from Madison to Milwaukee.
"I do all the right things, and they're not taking breaks like I am," he said in a telephone interview from the road.
His concern for strangers is likely tied to the support he's received, as he strives and strides to raise money for research to cure Alzheimer's disease.
Alone, pushing his supplies in a stroller, Caffery has traveled from Seaside, Ore., over the past two months. He has found lodging, meals and companionship throughout the journey.
(Caffery will be looking for guidance and running mates on Thursday, likely starting in Wales, with Bay View and the Lake Express Ferry as his destination. Here is his proposed map, but it looks like he could use a guide to the Hank Aaron State Trail. Anyone interested in joining him for a few miles or providing assistance can contact him at email@example.com).
"I'm really dependent on strangers and the experience has changed my orientation to the world," said Caffery, a lecturer at the University of Massachusetts - Amherst. "It's by far the most surprising and extraordinary part of my trip."
When he reaches Misquamicut, R.I., hopefully about Aug. 12, Caffery will have traveled nearly 3,400 miles and carried out a mission dedicated to his father, who died of Alzheimer's in 2002.
"I have a very intense personal desire to act on the suffering that my Dad went through for many years," Caffery said.
He plans to travel about 40 to 50 miles on Wednesday and repeat the effort on Thursday to reach Milwaukee.
"What I really love is company," said Caffery, 49. "I spend a lot of time on the road by myself, so I would cherish any runners that want to run with me, and even walkers."
As for the heat, he plans to approach it with humility.
"It's easy to make 50 miles if I make good use of my time," Caffery said. "I do all the right things, and I'm not taking any chances at all."