This is as personal as it gets, I will not go into details of my physical conditions. If I make it to Vancouver, or even halfway, you’ll know I am fine, if I quit it means I am not that healthy. I am still battling some aches and pains but the bike and the mind will take care of that. The rest of this blog will be a travelogue, a collection of immediate tales and thoughts from my cross-country bike trip. Immediate: in the sense that my writings will come your way straight from the oven on the very same day that I buzz along America’s roads. It is going to be mainly spontaneous prose, an undisturbed flow from my mind, almost a stream of consciousness-type of communication. They will be somewhat incoherent so please bear with me. Kerouac once said, I have nothing to offer except my own confusion. My confusion will spawn musings about cities, roads, colors, anecdotes, nature and mysteries from the American pie! The route is simple: North West, hit the Big Lakes and then straight to the Pacific. What is it like to travel by bike? Much depends on the physical condition and much depends on the weather. It can be exhausting, exhilarating, heart-rendering, empowering, tedious, joyous. The constant wind that pummels your skin and the immediacy of the landscape with its colors and smells and noises make cycling a compelling experience. The desire to see all those mysterious dots on the map is bursting to the brim of my curiosity. If the motivation is there, it is up to the wings of desire to take me far on this journey. Ten days left before I take my bicycle from Washington DC to the Pacific coast. The training has gone okay but, for obvious reasons, I did not train as much as I would have liked. I only had three full weeks of cycling. The longest shakedown ride has been 80 miles. Add 30 miles to that and 35 times over every day on the trot and Vancouver might just be in sight. This trip requires guesswork and improvisation, experimentation and substitution, and, above all imagination to deal with failure and uncertainty in a creative way. What else can we do?
Monday, July 16, 2012
-10: The wings of desire
I am gonna tell it straight, the greatest fear is not that the lights will go out. The greatest fear, the paralyzing, chilling thought about all this is not being able to be independent, of mind and body, and therefore be impaired in the realization of my dreams. The brave Christopher Reeves wrote a book about his ordeal entitled Still Me, I love that title. My focus is not on being healthy, my focus is on being.
Posted by Luigi at 8:43 AM