Posted by: twistsoffeet | July 14, 2011

I am a fortunate man

I am sitting in a park in Jackson Nebraska just relaxing and thinking how fortunate I am. Two days ago I had been in a similar park being sucked dry of my blood by mosquito’s, my tent was damaged my sleeping bag soaking wet with runoff/flood water and many of my other belongings were also soaked. Although I did not want to do it I called my cousin and asked for help. Did I absolutely need help in order to survive ? No! Would I have had to end my tour without his and other relatives assistance ? No! Was I in a fairly uncomfortable if not desperate situation where having a little help would help me get back on track sooner and stronger and with a better more confident attitude? Yes! Would asking for a little help make me more comfortable in the long run? Yes!
So I asked for help from my cousin who helped me by driving nearly 100 miles to pick me up and take me too his home. While there I was able to wash my sleeping bag and other items thoroughly and dry them, also I was able to repair my tent get some good comfortable sleep and eat good food. While there I cooked for my cousin (actually my 2nd cousin) and his parents. I love to cook and enjoyed cooking some cuisines that they would normally not experience and that was very gratifying. I cleaned myself up and watched some cooking shows as well as the history channel and that was also very enjoyable.
My actual cousins wife volunteered to give me a ride back to where her son had picked me up so I would not have to repeat those miles. I easily agreed. While she was giving me a ride today it looked like another storm was coming in and after discussion about the storm and the possible/probable difficulties involved in crossing the Missouri river we decided that the best course of action would be for her to drive me across the river. Yes I know I cheated and did so without my life being in  eminent  danger. I cheated solely for convenience and to and to get me somewhat back on track with where I would have been if I had not been the flood. I do not feel a bit guilty. I have still actually pedaled my bicycle nearly 1,600 miles with over 1000 miles minimum remaining so I am happy with this accomplishment.
A person might say why even mention it if you do not feel guilty? The only thing I can answer is that I am putting it out there just for the sake of being honest about it. I can now when finished with this tour say I hopped on my bicycle in Florida and ended up in Colorado after riding nearly 3000 miles. I can say honestly that I may not have been able to do it without the help of family that has helped me more than I can ever thank them enough for and at the very least the family that has helped me as well as the total strangers that have assisted me with directions or letting me camp at their homes or gave me a delicious meal or many other things that many people have assisted me with on this journey of mine.
So here I sit under a shelter in a park in Nebraska safely and comfortably watching a gentle but continuous rain soak everything around. Here I sit thinking how very fortunate I am to have the loving caring family that I have and how fortunate I have been to meet the people I have met while on this bicycle ride of mine. Everyone was either life saving  trip saving helpful  inspiring educating or interesting. And while I could have done this tour without the assistance that most of these people provided me with I can absolutely say that without their assistance it would not have been nearly as fun or interesting or educational or safe for me without their kind assistance.
Yes I am a fortunate man not just for the pleasures of this tour but also for the hardships. I am able now to continue riding with enthusiasm and strengthened by the inspiration that I get every time I think about all of those who have assisted me. And that is the silver lining to any dark cloud that I may encounter because I know there are good people out there for me to meet as I continue my tour.


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