Yep, I’ve been away a while. Thinking, digesting, sulking, and not really finding a reason to keep posting here without an ongoing narrative of my travels.
After reaching the west coast and having some mechanical problems that changed my TENTATIVE plans, I flew home, made arrangements to ship the broken bike back, and went back to work. It was an odd time. A lot of people asked about my trip, and said they’d love to have gone, and they listened as I chose a single experience to relate that might in some way represent the entire trip…but it always fell short. I’m sure both in their understanding and my telling of the story.
And then there was the empty space in my garage. It wasn’t just the empty garage, it was an empty piece of they way I spend my time. It was a space where I used to walk out of my house and chose to take some time for me to recharge, and refocus.
Now, instead of getting out of bed, packing up my gear, and heading out into an unfamiliar landscape, meeting new people, and breathing in some stress-free air… well, I am ashamed to say, I didn’t quite know what to do with myself. I spent time online seeking advice on how to repair my broken bike. They all agreed that I was going to have to crack open the transmission; an expensive process. I sulked some more.
I honestly do not like the idea of being that attached to a piece of metal. I also honestly have to admit…I certainly am.
Well, the piece of metal arrived on a huge truck. Thank you haulbikes.com. After recharging the battery and hopping on to refill the gas tank, I confirmed that indeed, the transmission was not downshifting. I knew it wouldn’t heal itself, but still … eesh. Dollar signs were multiplying in my head. How much would I spend? Was it really worth it to spend a couple of thousand dollars on a bike that was probably worth $5,000?
The day came where I knew the next morning I would take it into the shop and brace myself for the professional bad news. I stood in my garage looking at the bike. Then I thought…”Well, I can’t really break it.” So I grabbed a couple of wrenches and started taking some things apart. There is a small panel on the underside of the frame that is designed to keep dirt from accumulating on the end of the gearshift link arm. It’s also designed very well to actually collect the dirt at a point that impedes the arm from easy travel. In other words – there was a big hairball on the end of the rod that was keeping my shifter from working! After about 20 minutes with some WD-40, a rag, and a few wrenches … My bike shifts like butter.
I WAS ELATED!!! I saved those imaginary thousands! I had a working bike again! Then it hit me.
I had at least three days on the west coast that I could have been riding. I only needed a rag and some WD-40 and I could have… I should have…
That’s been some of my journey since I last posted. I’ve come to the conclusion that I will not live in “Woulda. Coulda. Shoulda.” I’m so grateful for the time I was given to make my trip. I’m so grateful to have that empty space in my garage again sporting a shiny piece of working machinery. And I’m grateful to be out on the roads in North Georgia enjoying the fall weather. I am truly a blessed man.