As I write this post I am all cosy inside my sleeping bag having warmed myself up from the campfire after a very chilly swim in the Pacific Ocean at San Simeon, California. Hopefully once we hit LA in a few days the sea will have warmed up a bit.
I have been on the road cycling for approaching two months now. To put it lightly posts have been a tad sporadic, for several reasons. The first reason is that since beginning cycling, what only seems yesterday, in Alaska I wished to enjoy this experience to the max. I think that to fully enjoy the moment I would have to immerse myself fully in the cycle and interacting with all the amazing people we have met. Initially I did not foresee this as something that would detract a lot of time. However we soon came to realise that almost every time we stop someone will come up to us and start a conversation. Although this means we have less time to ‘relax’ and write blog posts I certainly would have it no other way. In fact I think this is one part of American culture that they should really be proud of. I have thoroughly enjoyed meeting every single person I have spoken to over the past two months. Yes, many of the conversations are repetitive, (where are you cycling? Where have you come from? Where are you headed? Etc.) however these can often develop into very interesting and insightful conversations that allow us to understand and interact more with American culture and other people. I see it very much a learning experience and think that I have embraced more of my American roots over the past two months as I now have no problem going up to anyone and starting a conversation.
The second reason why posts have been slightly more sporadic is that our days have been immensely bush on tour. When we are not speaking to people we are taking photographs, reading books, writing diaries cooking food, eating food, cycling or sleeping. All these things that are relatively essential to our day-to-day schedule make the addition of blog posts an extra task that often falls down the pecking order. I also tend to prefer to write posts after I have time to reflect and think about a situation or a day rather than just write one ‘in the moment’ after an event has happened. However I have been experimenting with the GoPro in these situations and have several hours of footage that will need editing into a short film after the expedition.
The third reason that I can think of of the top of my head (as I am writing on the road just before bed I have little time for reflection) is the poor internet signal. Despite being in California and on the coast, a popular tourist destination, the phone signal is pretty poor so I often don’t have enough internet to post a blog post. Instead I have preferred to send out quick tweets or Instagram posts, which besides updating people of our progress have acted as mini blog posts about life on the road.
However despite the previous in-continuity of posts we are currently camped just outside San Simeon. We have spent the last couple of days cycling with a friend called Bart, who has also cycled from Anchorage. We will cycle as a group of three down to LA together and then Tom and I will carry on to the Mexican Border. The weather is certainly getting warmer and today we finally experienced the fabled tailwinds from the North West, which were fantastic. Despite today having a lot of climbing (close to 2000 metres) we are now into the last 8 cycling days to the Mexican border and only have to go up to 1000feet another two times.
It is always sad when a holiday begins to come to an end. As this cycle draws to a close it is probably time I begin to prepare myself mentally for it and for not cycling every day anymore. It will be a strange experience. The past two months have definitely changed me as a person, hopefully a better person. I will definitely continue to go on similar holidays for this very reason. Though I have many current ideas as to what the next one will entail…