Why are you doing this?
Throughout my trip I was constantly asked this question. At the time I never had a decent response, and to be honest I still don’t know why I wanted to do this trip. I know that as I settle back into my life here in Bozeman, I have a new appreciation for the simple things in life. Little tiny things that I forget to value, things I often take for granted. The feeling of warm clean socks, a cold beer, a hot shower, laughter, and the joy of feeling a loved one’s embrace. My first day back I caught myself being amazed at how soft the inside of my pants pocket felt. How silly is that. I was amazed at how good it felt to put my hands in my pockets. Such a simple thing and yet I found immense enjoyment from it.
Maybe that is it. Maybe part of why I did this trip was to change my perspective. Turns out that sometimes I’ve got to suffer a little bit to remind myself just how good I’ve got it (Sometimes I’ve got to suffer a lot). In my mind this trip was much more a feat of patience than a feat of strength.
Bike touring forces you to take the world as it comes. Sometimes it flys by at an exilerating 35 miles an hour, and sometimes it crawls painfully by at 4 miles an hour. There is suprisingly little out there on the road that you can control. All you can do is wake up, eat, pack up camp, get on your bike, and peddle. Learning to embrace the uncertainty and patiently watching each day unfold before you is a crucial skill for bike touring! A single day ride turns into two day rides, and soon you’ve done a week’s worth of day rides, before you know it those day rides culminate into a long distance tour.
I’m sure that as the days pass and I grow more and more comfortable back at home I will again start to take these comforts for granted. I’m also sure that somewhere deep down inside a new dream will be born. It will start off with a little flicker and eventually with a little attention it will grow into a burning flame. One day I’ll wake up and I’ll find myself spending every moment thinking about it. Eventually I’ll succumb to the dream and do everything necessary to make it a reality. It isn’t sexy, but it usually starts out with me making a spreadsheet. That’s right, a spreadsheet outlining the details of a dream is a sure sign that I’ve caught the bug. For some reason typing gear lists, food menus, budgets, and timelines into excel is the catalyst that helps my dreams blossom into reality.
I don’t know what the next dream will be and I don’t know why I’ll be so powerfully inclined to make it a reality. I don’t know, but for now I’ll sit back with my hands in my unusually plush pockets and enjoy the little things in life. Watch this space for spreadsheets in the future and we again will go on an adventure together!
Thanks to everyone for all your support!!!