Before I left on this trip, I was swamped by well wishes and support regarding the upcoming events. Even the comments like “utter lunacy” and “fantastic madness”, were delivered tongue in cheek and dripping with implied support, this does not go unwelcomed and as the date draws near, these gestures of support loom large on the near horizon and are a comfort at the times when self doubt creeps in at 2 in the morning inside a flapping tent.
It’s true in my case, I look at myself dispassionately and wonder why I find such a venture so achievable, when guys that I know in my group of friends balk at the prospect.
You find yourself asking inside your head...”Who’s wrong, them or me...” ?
I do know that an essential mechanism to enable one to face something like this, is to learn to compartmentalise and break the enormous journey into easily manageable bite size chunks.
It may be worth considering that while I was being congratulated for soldiering away for seven weeks at a wonderful trip, a goodly percentage of my supporters were spending as much of their life as I, getting up, going to work, coming home and having three hours before bed, then doing exactly the same thing tomorrow, so as to provide for their loved ones.
What I did was easier, more enjoyable and more self serving than them.
If I said the trip was relatively easy, it is not because I am God like in any way, it’s just that I went for a medium length ride for 49 days in a row with a week off in the middle.
Which brings me to a point....
Why would it not be possible for a group of guys to all purchase an identical bike, meet at a central point and head off on some sort of quest ? I gratefully accept the kudos that have been offered to me, but I must let you know that most guys here would be able to do similar, if you don’t want to I understand, but please don’t think you cannot.
A concept something like.
Pick a destination in the middle of the U.S. and form a number of fringe groups about 400 miles out from the centre. Each group forms it’s own faction and converges on that point, it’s not about the meeting at the end, it’s about forming a desire in your mind and getting together to make it happen. There’s a certain excitement that manifests when you pick a crazy idea and say...
“Bugger it, I’m just gunna’ go....”
The less suitable the bike, the more suitable it is.
I loved the thought of being laughed at when I parked my bike next to the 1200 BMW GS’, KTM 1190’s, Ducati Multistrada’s and Africa Twins, but the only trouble was....
It never happened....(I parked the bike, but no one laughed..)
I was made an awffer I couldn’t refuse by a group of Harley riders on an 8 person table occupied by seven of them at Pine Creek.
“Hey mate.. is that your ******* postie bike...?”
“Yes mate, it is..”
“Are you gunna’ come and sit with us, or do I have to come and get ya’...”. (Notice there was no question mark..?)
It wasn’t a question...
“Yeah ok, thanks...”
So on went a rollicking conversation regarding the benefits of living your life the way you wish and not setting out to artificially conform. Upon leaving they all gave me a well meant congratulatory handshake and a Man hug....
There are a thousand stories that are all fundamentally the same and carry the same intrinsic message, but I think we should move onto another tack.
If there’s one thing above all else that I would love to see come from all this, is that there’ll be a bit of a groundswell of interest among those who would like to do similar. I reckon it has been one of the most fulfilling trips that I have done and I think that’s because it seemed like an ill advised venture.
But it worked.
Thank you all.