Jason: Well after 12 days and over 450 miles covered the biking has officially concluded in LA. We could have pushed on through the city to complete an 80 mile day yesterday and then really pushed it today to make up the 150 we lacked to the border (HA!) but this felt like a good time to finish. The rest of the coast would have been endless city biking, which as you all know generally only affords us significant problems. In short, city biking (with a loading down bike at least) is miserable. So we coasted the final 30 miles into Santa Monica yesterday to Eliz’s place and felt good about how far we had come. The song of the day was “Xxplosive” by Dr. Dre, in light of rollin down the PCH through LA. Veronica, you might have to explain to the others about Dre’s hood!
We just dropped our bikes off at REI to be shipped back to the east coast and Ben will be leaving tomorrow to go to burning man. Now we can relax a little and think back on the whole trip. A few things that I will take away from it.
You let go of the little things that usually drive you crazy. For one, I currently have a beard. A really nappy one with a half grown mustache. Gross, but I decided to just see how long I could stand it.
I have come to realize that getting lost is inevitable so you can either let it annoy you or just make the best of things. Often you will find a cool restaurant, shop, or bum to talk to.
When you travel on a bike (or travel in an uncommon way, removing most of the luxuries) you meet a much more diverse array of people. “Pretty cool, and a little crazy” is the easiest way to put it. That’s the kind of people we met. People in cars thought we were nuts, grown men who had done our trip before practically shed a tear sharing the experience with us, and the bums that we often camped with usually had good advice for us. A very real perspective that common travelers didn’t have. We met very few people our same age, as we figured that most either were now at work, looking for work, or back at school. We were fortunate enough to be at option D. None of the above.
I appreciate all of you taking an interest in our little adventure, your thoughts and prayers got us through some sketchy times. Thanks mom and dad for understanding, even though you probably though it was crazy to do this. In 5 years maybe we can get a group to do the east coast tour!?!? To close, as Confucius say, “Man who bike in front of car may get tired, but man who bike behind car get exhausted.”
-Ben’s wrap up to come…