It was March 26th of 2010, exactly one year ago. This is the day that Vanessa and I started our long journey by bicycle that took us from San Diego, Through the southern states of our country and up the east coast all the way to new york. I think about this trip daily, In weird ways. The other day while working I had a strange flashback to a day we were in Mississippi. There was one campground in the area, and they were way over priced. We decided we were perfectly safe setting up camp behind this dentists office, And we were. And It was beautiful. The sunset was perfect. We cooked up a bunch of macaroni and cheese. I'm not sure what else we ate, but probably a bread of some sort and a can of veggies. Those were two things we ate a lot of.
Or I'll say to myself, "I wonder how Tony is doing" our friend we made in Louisiana. An Ex truck driver who injured himself and befriended us inside his cousins restaurant because we were clearly not from around the area and we had some tattoos. Tony drove trucks because he loved traveling and seeing new places, he also Loved tattoos. So we hit it off pretty well. What he did for us, cooking dinner, putting us up in his place for the night. That goes beyond southern hospitality.
Sometimes I'll think back to the worst hardest days of the trip and laugh about it. Im not sure how we made it through some of the things we had to, but it all worked out every time.
I could go on forever, I could talk about each and every one of those 72 days and tell you how amazing it all was. How unexpectedly wonderful the southwest was, How hot and tiring it was to get through the deep south, How Incredible to felt to go to Richmond and DC and be surrounded by friends under the roofs of their houses where we could really relax and be 100 percent carefree for the first time since leaving Richard and Bridgett's apartment That Friday morning on the 26th of march 2010.
Then I think about our return to New York, and how I felt there was no place id rather be in that moment. We had our friends and family there to welcome us and It made for the perfect ending to an incredible 72 days.
But I suppose that's it. It was the end of that trip but the beginning of so much more. Those days of traveling allowed vanessa and I to meditate and think beyond anything we had thought before. For At least 5 hours a day were were sitting on our bicycles pedaling, This gave us more time to ourselves then we had ever experienced in our adult lives.
I believe I will be forever changed as a person due to our travels last year. I also believe that in my dying days I'll look back at that journey as one of the greatest things I had done. I hope to continue to do great things but I have at this point now set the standard high and it will be hard to compare anything to what we have done.
The road, the ever changing landscapes, eating and sleeping outdoors, Being in the best physical shape of my lifetime. These are also things I miss.
It really is hard to look back on it all because It feels bitter sweet. To have done it and for it to be over. But I love where I am today and I wouldn't be here if we hadn't taken that trip. I'm sure I'll be able to say that more and more about things in my life as I grow older. And Really I suppose that trip was just a part of the big picture which I started a long time ago and will continue to work on for years to come.
Thank you everyone. Who supported us, Before during or after. For non of what happened could have if it wasn't for you.
I'm excited to start wearing shorts on the regular.
When I was a bit younger I would try my hardest to not wear shorts, even in the summer. I just wasn't into it. Now a days though, I'm all about it, makes no sense to me that I ever wasn't. Just one of those to cool for school things I guess.
I woke up early today, I drove Vanessa to work at 6:15am and then went on a coffee run for my store because we were out of Decaf espresso. I also bought a new coffee pot for our house because Tim Broke ours the other day while doing dishes, It was a good price and I brought home some super good coffee so I felt it needed to be replaced asap.
I'm off of work today, and tomorrow! Yesterday at my request, our landlord dropped off a 55gallon barrel at our house. These are used in the food industry to ship bulk items. I plan to convert this barrel into a water tank witch I will hook up to our rain gutter in the front of the house so that I can catch the rain. I will then use that caught water to feed our growing plants all summer long. So today I will begin working on that project.
I've started some seeds in our bedroom and bathroom(the two rooms which get the most light). This began a few weeks ago. The first round of seeds have sprouted and are looking great. Once I got that first set going well I started a second round and am currently awaiting for them to poke through and show themselves.
What you are looking at here is the starts of Onions, Carrots, Radishes, Swiss Chard, Spinach, And Oregano.
Under the plastic are more planted seedlings of the same listed above but in addition there is also, Sunflowers, And multiple varieties of Lettuce.
When the time is right I plan to transplant these little guys into the soil out in front of our house which I have been working over for the past week, getting it ready. At that time I'll also directly sow more seeds straight into the earth. By doing this I hope to have more plants growing at different stages throughout the season so that they will produce food over a longer period of time.
(these pictures are taken with vanessa's Mac. I have a nice camera which I got as a present from my parents for Christmas but the battery is dead. The next set of pictures will be nicer!)
Last night I tried my best to sleep through the partying going on down stairs. Ryan had friends over because nothing else was going on. I on the other hand was tired and vanessa was as well due to working till 11 and having to be back at work this morning at 7am. I on the other hand did not have to be back at work. I am off today. I downloaded some music from the band I recently stumbled into called "summer people" I like them a lot I think. What I did after that was walk up the block to Chimborazo park to stand in on a public meeting discussing the future of the Chimborazo Play Ground. Its a very diverse playground as of now and they plan to do some remolding and renovations. As of now there are two basketball courts, one of which is used by Skateboarders and free style bikers and the other is left open to play ball. there is also a play ground area for little children, a few rectangle courts where mostly older people get together to play bocce ball. A bunch of open green grass a tennis court, and a large community garden. Perfect in words not so perfect when seen visually.
The ramps that skateboards have built continue to get worn out, This causes an eye sore for the elders, and a hazard for the young ones. The park itself is worn out, it needs a face lift, There is a building for restrooms that is locked up in fear that leaving it open will attract homelessness, drugs and sex as said by the leader of the meeting this morning... I agree to an extent. They have big plans to help the whole community by helping this park but somehow when the budget was passed and things were priced, the first thing to make the cut off of the list was the idea to build a permanent skateboarding area.
Which is why I, along with other younger people made sure to have a presence in this meeting today. I may not have been living in this neighborhood long, Or who knows even how long I'll be here, But it's clear that this is bigger then just my existence here. In the end things seem to be moving in the right direction. No one seems opposed to the idea of building a skateboarding area in the plan for the park. The problem is when and how at this point. A 2nd meeting will be held on my birthday, the 19th to hopefully make an outline of what will be put into place and then a plan to fund the operation. As I and many others expressed this morning, People will come out of the wood works to volunteer time, money, and skills if it is set in stone that the parks department will do their part in helping on their end.
I'm excited to see something so good being put into place for the future of the neighborhood I'm currently living in, and its nice to be a part of the process. In today's meeting alone I met a bunch of new younger people I have never met before that live only blocks from me, and was able to introduce myself to the older generations that have spent the past 5-45 years in this neighborhood. If we didn't create a presence in the room the whole park would be picnic tables and bocce ball courts. No fun, no thanks.