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Day 58 – Honouring the mystery

(78 miles)

I lost a contact lens today as I was riding. We’d ridden very gently up to the top of Chief Joseph’s Pass in the freezing cold air of the early morning. This was followed by about 8 miles of steady downhill that weren’t as fun as they should have been because the poor road surface and the mottled shade from trees made for a very hairy ride as we hooned down the hill hoping and praying that we wouldn’t hit a massive pot-hole or pile of gravel. A cross-headwind at least slowed us to a reasonable pace but it also blew straight past my sunglasses. One minute my eye was fine, then I blinked and realised I was losing my lens and the next second it was gone, wisked away on the wind. I ended up doing the last three miles down the hill trying to decide if it was better with one eye shut (you really lose your perspective) or not (you get a headache from having one blurry view and one clear view). I had spare lenses so it was actually no big deal to lose one – as long as it doesn’t happen regularly.

Early morning dew on the tent

Taken imminently before I was attacked by a giant...

Matt leaving our free camping spot

The rest of the ride, down the Bitterroot valley was beautiful. All slowly downhill following the river with the warm sunshine bringing out our smiles.

We stopped at a bike shop in Hamilton (our day’s destination) and Matt picked up another spare inner tube which he ended up needing almost immediately as his front tube ripped near the valve while we were still ‘taking care of business’ (arguing with AT&T) in Hamilton. He’s not a happy chappy about all his flats!

Meanwhile, in America...

 

We haven’t been able to make too much use of warmshowers hosts so far as there just aren’t any in most of the small towns we pass through. But when we do, they’ve all been great. And today was no exception. Actually they set the bar so high it will be mighty hard to better! Brian and Laurie live in an awesome big house just outside Hamilton. They only just signed up with warmshowers three weeks ago and we were their first cyclists (hostees?). Consequently we got the full works. They are categorically the ‘youngest’ 50-year-olds I’ve ever met. Probably a lot to do with their active life-style and healthy diet. Brian is a personal trainer, yoga instructor and budding, self-taught nutritionist. We had some great chats about England, California (where they come from), families (they’d decided not to have kids), food (a mutual interest), philosophy (we went DEEP!) and The Art of Seduction (you’ve been warned!). They plied us with food and drink all evening – and the next morning. Beer, margaritas, deer burgers and salad, chocolate, root beer floats, ‘chocovina’, whipped vodka (amazing!), popsicles, the list goes on…

Brian and Laurie - new life-long friends :-)

Brian and Laurie's house

My manly glass of Chocovina

Root-beer :-)

 

I slept in The Worlds Most Awesomest Bed. Made entirely from big logs. I want one! I suspect it might be a bit pricey to get it shipped back to the UK from the little shop here where Brian and Laurie bought theirs, but the dream is alive.

This could be a 5-star hotel!

I love this bed!

 

The phrase ‘honouring the mystery’ was something Brian mentioned tonight as we were chatting about our relaxed, ‘see-where-we-end-up’ attitude to planning each days ride. I think it expresses a fascinating and refreshing approach to life and personally I would say this is exactly how God intended us to approach life – constantly exploring his creation with open eyes, ears, mind and heart. I’ll leave you with some more of Brian’s wisdom:

“Maybe you don’t know what your dreams are until you reach them”

“You don’t realise you’re fulfilling your dreams and fantasies until you’re in them”

One Response to “Day 58 – Honouring the mystery”

  1. Simon Braschi says:

    G-Force!

    Who needs vision anyway? Use echo-location!

    Seriously man, I’m so proud of you. Sometimes when I’m cycling 4.2 miles from Waterbeach to work, I think of you. And I think how much more dangerous my life is than yours as I cycle passed the angry chavs in Milton.

    Godspeed.

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