Friday, October 21, 2016

Setting in for the Long Haul

Hey Guys,

I know it’s been a while since my last entry. It’s hard to keep up with all this stuff when you’re putting in the miles. Right now, I bet you can’t guess where I am…Yep, McDonalds! Oh, what a monster I’m becoming. I hate investing in such a monopoly, but hey, what can I say, It’s open 24/7 and it’s got free Wi-Fi.

I actually spent almost all day at the Starbucks in Safeway editing the latest episode of the Vlog. I took a short, one-hour, break to  be interviewed by a guy named David from the Safford newspaper. It went well I think. I stayed sedentary for pretty much the whole day, eating everything in the store. I needed the time to get my mind right anyways.

It’s now about 8:30 and the town is bustling with Friday night commotion. I’m out on the sidewalk. This McDonalds doesn’t believe in providing outlets, or allowing people to access the patio from outside… I came here because the Safeway Wi-Fi wasn’t working. I have about a week before I can commit to downloading the blog, so I figured I’d just get it done.

I don’t’ really like the idea of riding at night, but I’ll do it if it’s necessary. Fortunately, this town is pretty small outside the main drag; so finding a spot to pitch my tent shouldn’t be too hard. It’s past my bedtime. I’m usually asleep by now. I can hear all the old high school fight songs that the band is playing down the street. There must be a football game in progress. It makes me wonder where those high school days went! It seems like just yesterday I, myself, was rolling up to McDonalds with my posse after a game, being cool.

We were at “Steak and Shake” once, and a kid from our rival school flipped us off from inside, and we parried his sign with our own tough-guy motions. One thing led to another, and before we knew it, he was coming outside to finish the job. Luckily, I was already in full motion in my Honda Accord. As he proceeded to exit the building puffed up like a rooster, I screeched around the corner with my friend hanging out of the window, slingshot in hand.  This was surely an attempted drive-by shooting from the prospective of said puffed-up rooster. He tripped and scurried and crawled for his life. I will never forget that night.

As I sit here against the wall of McDonalds, appearing to be a bum in the eyes of many that pass me by, I think about all the different routes my life could taken.  I’ve always been a dreamer. I’ve always admired original ideas and romanticized a simpler life.

The older I get, the more the question seems to get brought up, both from others and myself: “Are you ever going to settle down?” That’s a tough question. But the more it gets asked, the more I tend to question my motives and goals. Would I like to have a family one-day? Yes. Do I think I need to quit reaching for my goals to have that? No. My path is one that yearns for new experiences, challenges. I can’t help it. If I’m not in the middle of an adventure, I’m scheming up a new one. It’s just the way I am.

I interviewed my grandpa some years back, not long before he passed away. There’s always been this one thing that he said that’s never left me. He said, “If I hadn’t made a commitment to you grandma, I would have stayed in Germany,  just to experience it.” I feel it more and more, now that I’m older; that idea that if something feels right, go for it. Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there and give something a shot. Don’t let societal norms persuade you to conform. Do your thing, be genuine, and finish your whole plate of food before you decide you don’t like something.

I’ve been on the road now for three weeks. It’s been a crazy journey so far. I can’t believe that I still have so much longer to go.  I’ve carried my bike into the Pacific ocean, tumbled down sand dunes in the desert, climbed upon the eroded mesas of the arid Arizona mountains, and been humbled by tens of thousands of gigantic semi trucks flying by at 80 miles an hour. 

I’ll be in New Mexico soon, and from there, Texas. As I continue this long haul, I continue to think about the kids I’ll be helping. I’ve seen poverty in the reservations I’ve traveled through. It’s sad to think that most of those kids don’t have a whole lot of chances or privileges. It’s nice to think that I might be able to make a positive change in at least a few kids’ lives. I’m excited.

Well, the blog is almost done uploading. I’m going to wrap this up. I’m headed to Solomon, AZ tomorrow, then on to Silver City NM. It’s about 100 miles way. After I hit Silver City, I’ll have about 100 miles to El Paso. Texas is going to be on LONG HAUL. Bring it on…

Till next time,


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