This is Mike.
I met Mike this morning because 1.) I decided to ride my bike. 2.) Because the TransAmerica trail runs through my back yard. 3.)Because I decided that my day would be better if I turned around to ride with a Trans rider, instead of finishing my ordinary route.
I was right.
Mike is originally from Oregon, but he worked in New York City. Had an advertising gig. He’s 31. Divorced. He said that everyone treats New York like it’s something special, but it wasn’t anything special to him. This trip will take him back home. Then he’ll probably go teach English in South Korea for a while. After that, who knows.
We didn’t get to ride together for long, but it was an interesting conversation. He’s glad to be in the flat part of Kansas. He’s averaging about 100 miles a day now. Through the Appalachian Mountains, it was 40 or less, depending on the hills and weather. Plus, on the flats, he can meditate and zone out. The hills are too much work for that. He left from Yorktown, Virginia, and will end up in Astoria, Oregon. He has shipped home about 20 pounds of gear he’s since realized he doesn’t need. Riding with so much gear, he said, has been a learning curve.
He’s been on the road 40 days, and hopes to be in Oregon by Aug. 1.
He’s met a lot of interesting people, including a woman from Switzerland who is basically making up her own cross country trail as she goes along. He also has a plastic dinosaur that his mom gave him. It’s his “traveling buddy.” He takes pictures with it, and it helps him take more photos – something he doesn’t do often. But the dinosaur makes it a little goofy and fun, so he’s more apt to take a picture of the scenery if his buddy is in the photo.
Mike is traveling with several people he met on the Adventure Cycling Association website. They often meet up with other cyclists and set up group camps at city parks.
Follow his travels at http://americananthem.tumblr.com/