American Skid Marks
Setting out on a great American motorcycle roadtrip.

The Idea to Get Rollin’

The plan. The plan is to ride my motorcycle around the United States and southern Canada in a big figure 8 shape. Roughly laid out, the route will take me from Seattle to Key West to Quebec to San Diego and Back to Seattle. This is a trip that I’ve been fantasizing about for a few years now. The original “Ooooh, wouldn’t it be cool if …” moment happened for me when I curled up on my couch and watched Charley Boorman and Ewan McGregor ride thier bikes around the planet in ‘The Long Way Round’. I was awestruck. As the series progressed a tense little ball of nervous energy built itself up in my belly. At some point in my life I had to do an epic ride (maybe a few ;)).

For the past few years, on and off, I’ve been planning this thing in my head. The original plan was to save up money through 2010 and early 2011, and embark in early summer of 2011. So, why instead am I pushing up the trip by a full year? Why now?

In late December of 2009 I was laid off from my software development job here in Seattle. From the day that I found out, I was filled with an insistent and penetrating restlessness. Try as I might, I absolutely could not get excited about going back to another desk job. Not now anyway. Don’t get me wrong, as far as careers go, I like software development; I just need something that I can really get passionate about right now. Life is too short to spend being bored at work.

So, after wrestling with the inevitable depression, panic, insecurity and feelings of worthlessness associated with losing my job for a week or so, it dawned on me … why not now? Why not find a way to make this trip happen this summer?

The second the thought flashed through my head, I knew what I was going to do. I knew it was the right thing. You ever get that? Find the thing you just know is right? It feels like a punch to your gut and a surge of adrenaline to your brain. My eyes bulged out of my head and that tense, warm excitement that I had felt a few years earlier on my couch watching Charley and Ewan struggle accross the Mongolian steppes rushed back into my belly. I had to do this thing.

This blog is intended to document both my plans for the ride, the process of preparing for the ride as well as the ride itself. I’ve got lots of plans and no time or money to make them happen ;). I leave on June 1, 2010. I’d love for anyone reading this to follow me on my quest and even take part in it.

See you out on the road!

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