A close friend of mine died today.

There is no right way to respond. I drift between a numbness seeking distraction and fighting off tears. Some of our friends will be angry. Some will weep. Some will let a darkness block the pain. Eventually I will do all these things but for now I write, because writing is how I process. I wish I could say I have some noble purpose in my writing but I don’t, it is selfishly for me because this is what I need.

Soon, probably tonight, I will drink. I will pour one out for Kaluza, the beer soaking into the soil is my prayer, my tears, my ceremony. It is one I have performed twice before for men I knew, men who died before they reached 30. Men who impacted my life and I loved. Inevitably my thoughts will drift to them, to Brad and Fifer as well.

Now though, I am a rock and I write. I am a rock because that is the role I am comfortable with. It is easier for raise a barrier and act as a foundation for others for a time. It won’t last though. After I drink the beers and the night grows silent I won’t be able to keep the wall up and my tears will fall. I will weep uncontrollably, pushing my masculinity, my military hardness, my image and ego, and every care I have aside. I will hold my partner close and she will help me bear this burden, a burden I wish I didn’t need to put on her. But I will need to, I will need to release to keep from going insane.

I don’t know if there is anything after this life. I hope there is, I want there to be, but I don’t know. If our spirit survives this mortal existence and we retain some sort of memories and identity I know Kaluza will be there. With that half grin and brightness in his eyes that make you feel special and loved. He inspired and will continue to. The memories I have with him I will cherish. The times he encouraged me to do what I loved instead of worrying about the risks will push me forward.

When the time comes and the tears dry up I will be able to make him immortal. I will live my life as he would have. I will be free and do what I can to inspire that in others… because above all things he was an inspiration. A never-ending source of joy, laughter, and reflection. In time we will all heal completely, we won’t forget but we will be changed. The scars never fade completely, but they help us truly enjoy the greatness and fragility of life. I told him how wonderful he was, I wish I would have told him more, because in a real sense I am the man I am today because of him.

I’ll miss you Kaluza, but I’ll keep your memory with me until I pass on as well. And when that day comes I will know I did great in this life if I have half the love shown for me that you do today. You made us all better.

Popping Sweet Oregon Cherries (with our mouths)

It is always kind of bittersweet when we leave a place that we love. We may be nomads right now but that doesn’t mean we are immune to the pull of a place to set down our roots. Someday we may return to Eugene… it is our type of place and having a college in town with an applicable Master’s program certainly doesn’t help. Alas, we had to get moving so we swung by Voodoo Doughnuts for a few more vegan noms and headed north to Corvallis.

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The ride was a long one for us (about 50 miles) but with a slight downhill the whole way it was not incredibly difficult, just a little long. We arrived at around 6:30pm and met our Couchsurfing hosts. Our hosts (Ebba and John) had a beautiful little farm house with a few acres. After getting settled in we helped get the potatoes, berries, and other vegetables out of the garden for dinner. The meal was delicious and our hosts were incredibly warm and fun to chat with, it is just a shame we were all pretty tired. They even shared some homemade mead with us. After dinner and some chatting we hit the sack.

On our way out of Corvallis we swung by our 19th Brewery for a beer. We had some time to kill with only 20ish miles planned that day. We took our time riding up to Independence where we had a tour schedule at the Rogue Farm, we arrived early to have a few drinks before the tour got started. It was pretty cool hearing the history of the area, seeing hops growing on the vines, and touring the facility where hops are processed to give beer that glorious taste. We did have to leave early because we didn’t have a place to camp yet and the sun was quickly going down.

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We did meet a cool couple of people at the Rogue Farm (Brewery 20*) but one of the comments they made kind of stuck with me. One woman said we must be “trust fund” babies. It made me wonder how many people that we talked to were under the impression that our adventure was somehow funded by our parents… the implication being that it is unearned by us. The truth is, this trip is one of the results of decades of decisions, risk-taking, and following our hearts. If I hadn’t joined the army, went to college, took an incredibly low-paying job in DC because I loved the organization, and left DC when I was no longer happy there I would not be here now. Anna and Hans have similar stories, they took risks by moving when they were unhappy, we all saved money by living minimally, and we all got out of relationships that were no longer in line with our goals. We very intentionally have not had children because we properly use birth control, knowing that there is not really a rush. If we want kids in 10 years or more that is very possible. Anna’s job is a big part of why we can do this and not tap into our savings, but she is not our sugar-momma or anything… more like an employer where she pays us to do things like shopping, blogging, pictures, arrange housing, laundry, etc. She is basically our boss.

None of us were willing to settle for “what if”. We left homes, changed states, and leveraged opportunities as they came. We aren’t “trust fund” kids. Our families provide no financial support. There are things that benefited us that we had no control over (such as place and time of birth) but this ride is a result of our hard work. Maybe it is our age (though I’m in my early 30′s… hardly a child) that sparks this type of comment, maybe it is because we have ignored social requirements that we live where we grew up, marry early, have kids, take a shitty office job that we hate, and decide on security over liberty at every turn.

Anyway, end rant. We ended up finding an RV park that technically didn’t allow tent campers. They had some extra RV spots (and nobody on duty) so we paid the fee and set up. As is usually the case things went without any problems. The park was clean, had showers, and nobody bothered us. The only thing peculiar was the RV across from us that had an original 13-colony American flag flying on it. It reminded me of the Confederate flag that we saw flying over a house in southern Oregon a couple weeks ago. Last I checked Oregon didn’t really have any connection to the civil war… but I might be wrong. Regardless, it seems stupid to me

Living in the south for half a decade means I am pretty used to seeing the “stars and bars” flying. Part of me understands that there is some history there, but I still think it is a bad idea to hold onto that symbol. In fact, I find the whole “states rights” movement to be filled with poor judgement. States do not have rights, they may have powers vested to them by the Constitution but they do not have some sort of human rights that can be violated. Even those people (like myself) who believe in smaller, more local government shouldn’t hold on to the civil war or the Confederacy as something positive. Any institution that decides owning humans is okay is not one we should look back on for any moral guidance, even if they were right about other things. It is like trying to reclaim the swastika or quoting Hitler, no matter how noble your cause is it is a PR nightmare to bed yourself with that type of imagery. This is a lesson some libertarians should learn, no matter how economically correct or politically efficient it might be to back someone if they are a racist or sexist we should distance ourselves completely from them. If we want to change hearts and minds it is better to support good people who might not be philosophically pure over racist assholes who are correct in their ivory tower.

The next day (Saturday, June 21) we had our longest day scheduled, 56 miles. The route wasn’t too bad with only a couple 400ft hills but we didn’t want to take chances so we left early. Things went pretty smoothly as we took breaks every 10 miles or so to let the dog out and get food. There wasn’t a lot of population or stores on the road, it was essentially just a highway over the Coastal Range to Lincoln City. The sparse population of our ride ended up working well for us.

At one stop we had a big field behind us with a couple of trees blocking us from the highway. Anna and I decided to bang. It is important to keep the passion alive with trying new things and exploring interests with each other. You gotta be GGG. If one of your partners has an interest in trying something new you should be on the lookout for opportunities to explore that. I think very few things are so extreme that an immediate “no” is allowed (like anything involving feces for me). You should be able to babystep up to basically any interest or kink, as long as there is plenty of communication and respect for each other it is incredibly beneficial to experiment. Life is too short for just missionary position. I should also note how fucking awesome Hans is for acting as a look-out whenever play happens in public, true friends encourage and help you get orgasms whenever possible.

The ride continued to be smooth as we left the farmlands and found ourselves in the green hills and mountains again. As we got to the top of one of the hills I noticed the girls had stopped about 100 ft behind me. I thought they were peeing on the side of the road, but after about 20 minutes I thought maybe something else was up. It turns out they found some cherry trees and were picking them clean. So now we have some freaking awesome wild(?) cherries. They are delicious.

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We arrived in Lincoln City (motto: A Great Place to Try New Things) with a couple of hours of sun left which gave us plenty of time to get some food (and beer), find our campground, and get set up. We will be here for three nights so Anna can catch up on some work and then north to the Washington border and east to my family in Portland.

 

*Brewery List

  1. Highway 1 Brewing Company (outside Pescadero, CA)
  2. Firestone Walker (Paso Robles, CA)
  3. Russian River (Santa Rosa, CA)
  4. Lagunitas (Petaluma, CA)
  5. Bear Republic (Healdsburg, CA)
  6. Ruth McGowan’s (Cloverdale, CA)
  7. Anderson Valley Brewing (Boonville, CA)
  8. North Coast Brewing (Fort Bragg, CA)
  9. Eel River Brewing (Fortuna, CA)
  10. Redwood Curtain Brewing (Arcata, CA)
  11. Standing Stone Brewing (Ashland, OR)
  12. Oakshire Brewing (Eugene, OR)
  13. 10 Barrel (Bend, OR)
  14. Deschutes (Bend, OR)
  15. Boneyard Brewing (Bend, OR)
  16. Crux Fermentation Project (Bend, OR)
  17. Ninkasi Brewing (Eugene, OR)
  18. Hop Valley Brewing (Eugene, OR)
  19. Block 15 Restaurant & Brewery (Corvallis, OR)
  20. Rogue Farms (Independence, OR)

Serendipity

Disclaimer: This is an adult blog with adults doing adult things to other adults and to themselves. So if you don’t like drugs, banging, blah, blah, blah please view our PG-version of the adventure at www.10LegsWillTravel.wordpress.com and you can view all of our pictures at our Facebook page (aren’t we so legit!).

We ended up spending three full days in Medford with my friend Adam and his wife. During that time we borrowed their car to drive to Crater Lake, we took about a day and a half to relax and recharge, and we explored Ashland a bit with Adam and Julia. All these things were necessary in their own ways.

The trip to Crater Lake was absolutely incredible. It is a place all of us had wanted to see since the beginning of the ride but our change of route and slower pace made it momentarily unlikely. We had a discussion and realized a lot of places like Crater Lake will be unreachable unless we make some changes. We can’t change our pace but we can certainly open up our adventure a bit and allow for car travel when biking isn’t available. So, we borrowed Adam’s car and drove up to the gorgeous Crater Lake.

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The drive up there was amazing for all of us. Not only could we sit back and just relax a bit, it gave us a chance to listen to Dan Savage and bond in a way that we haven’t been able to recently. Despite travelling with each other and cramming into a tent at night we don’t have a lot of intimate bonding time. This few hours allowed us to chat about the future (and act as amateur advice columnists to the question’s sent to Savage). I wish I could really describe the beauty of Crater Lake but it really is one of those things you need to see for yourself. We took some pictures but they pale in comparison to real life. If you get the chance you should go. Higgs also loved it, he got to play in snow for the first time. He wasn’t impressed in the beginning but when we started throwing snowballs for him to chase or catch he had a grand old time.

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Our time exploring Ashland a bit (with more than a few drinks thanks to a winery and brewery visit) with Adam and Julia was a lot of fun. It is amazing how we can all fall back into old roles and reminisce with people that we haven’t seen in years (or decades). Kicking back with some drinks and just talking about the world and such brings a little bit of “normalcy” to our dynamic lives that is often needed. It was unfortunate that we had to leave and continue our ride so soon.

The trail out of Medford up into central Oregon wasn’t too bad. We had some sun beating down on us but the hills were manageable and we had either a good shoulder or low traffic. That first night we found a local fire department and asked if we could set up on their land. They didn’t care at all and were very friendly to us. It is amazing the difference in attitude between police officers and firefighters. In theory, the two suffer from the same problems all government institutions do, but clearly there are cultural factors or something that makes the way the two view the public as very different. We still avoid law enforcement but firefighters have been nothing but helpful… and who can resist those sexy uniforms?

The second day had a pretty big hill for us to conquer… basically anything over 800ft or so is considered “big” to us. It wasn’t so bad though and it gave us a really nice 10-15 mile steady downhill ride. That night we found a rest area near a river and set up our tent there. This was another time when we just assumed nobody would be checking a random, dark place on the side of the road on a Saturday night. As is often the case, being near a secluded water source encouraged us to get naked. So, Naked Saturdays has been bestowed upon our trip and will continue until we forget.

Sunday was a steady ride into Myrtle Creek, where our hosts (Mike and Pam) live. You may remember that we met Mike and Pam weeks ago outside a hotel when we were in Paso Robles, California. It was a serendipitous meeting. They weren’t supposed to be at that hotel (their preferred hotel was booked) and neither were we (we had some mechanical difficulties as the sun was going down). I’m glad it worked out this way though and we felt incredibly welcomed when we rode onto their beautiful farm.

Their farm has Morgans (a type of horse), chickens, a couple of wolfhounds, a little dog, and some cattle. They farmed a lot of greens and almost everything we ate came straight from their farm. Because my veganism comes from an ethical place I had no problem with indulging in the beef and eggs provided by our hosts… and oh man, the meals were fantastic. Pam also bakes her own bread and we purchased a couple of loaves of it for the road because it is literally (and I’m not exaggerating here) the best bread I have ever had in my life. Mike and his daughter (Katherine) also do some AMAZING metal cutting. I wasn’t there for the tour of the workshop but the art they create was absolutely stunning. I will want one for my own home if/when I get one.

The day of our arrival was pretty low-key. We had a vegetarian chili (provided by the neighbors), chatted with our hosts a bit about subjects we all enjoy (spirituality, physics, philosophy, the state of the world, etc), and hit the sack. Monday during the day was a work and errand day for us, and coincided with Mike and Pam being out of the house so it worked out really well. That evening we went over to the neighbor’s place (Amanda and Vince) to meet them and use their hot tub.

Vanda live on a beautiful home, currently for-sale, where for many years they had an intentional community. Several families shared living space and created a peaceful sanctuary to explore alternatives to the consumerism that has become such a strong part of the American identity. I can’t recall everything we discussed that night but Vince and Amanda are inspirations to us. After their house sells they are going to travel the country in an RV with their kids and I have a feeling our paths will all cross again.

That night we all took some pot cookies we acquired before going to sleep… it wasn’t the best idea for me. Edibles are notoriously hard to dose and when you are drunk your judgement is already impaired. I took a half of one (the recommended dosage) and when I wasn’t feeling it enough I took a whole cookie on top of it, and then I fell asleep. The food was slowly digested and my system took more weed than I was prepared for.

I woke up at about 2am in a bit of a panic. I was too stoned to walk or anything so I crawled out of the tent and tried to get some water from the water bottles on our bikes. It took several tries to get my body to respond to my brain and crawl to Anna’s bike. Her water bottles were empty so I crawled over towards my bike. At some point I gave up and just laid down to sleep outside. Then one of the crazies experiences of my life happened.

I regained consciousness to find myself on my hands and knees and banging my own head into the ground. I distinctly remember doing this at least three times before regaining control. I don’t know if I sleep-walked or what but I remember nothing between falling asleep near my bike and waking beating myself up a few yards away.

Fucked up, I know.

Well, I crawled my ass back into the tent and passed out. It wasn’t until the next morning when I looked in the mirror and saw a near black eye with several mild cuts that it really hit me what had happened. Be careful when doing drugs and make sure you dose yourself properly. All drugs should be legalized, but people need to act responsibly and take care of themselves. Don’t be stupid like me.

Needless to say, I was not in great shape when I woke in the morning. We had to put down some mileage on our way to Eugene but I was still pretty stoned (damn edibles) and my whole body ached. We finally hit the road around 2pm and had agreed to try and knock out 20 miles or so. A pretty moderate ride with an unavoidable big hill in the middle of it. To make matters worse the road the hill was on was gravel so we ended up pushing our equipment up it with very little traction. At several points we even had to help each other push equipment after leaning our own bikes on something, only to have to go back down the hill to get them later.

We made it into Roseburg completely mentally and physically exhausted. We found an abandoned lot of land off the highway and set up our tent for the night. It was dark pretty quickly but I wasn’t quite asleep when familiar blue, red, and white flashing lights lit up our tent. It is such a fucked up world when your response to those who “serve and protect” is fear, paranoia, and discomfort even when you aren’t doing anything wrong. I silently hoped that Higgs would be his normal quiet self and not give the cops approaching our tent any excuse to commit puppycide.

The officers informed us that we were trespassing and the property owner (who lived next door apparently) wanted us gone. The cops took our ID’s, ran them for warrants or whatever, and eventually left us alone to pack up in the pitch dark and find a new place to sleep. Because there is nothing safer for cyclists than to navigate unfamiliar roads in the dark while barely awake… We found a nearby Motel 6 and decided to get a room, as much as it pains us to spend that type of money on our pretty tight budget.

To be honest, the saddest thing about this is how quick the property owner turned to threats of violence instead of talking with us. People are so terrified of “the other” that they call men with guns who can do violence with impunity instead of simply telling us that we can’t stay on the property, or even just striking up a conversation with us. Nope, the first response is to call the police, to call guns, to issue threats, to terrify instead of communicate. It sucks, but it is unsurprising given the modern media and political situation.

We made the best of the hotel situation though and recharged our electronics, gave me a mohawk, showered, masturbated, and got to bed fairly early. Despite a ton of sleep we still didn’t hit the road until about 11am. Hotels are still tough to leave, but we had a good ride that day. The sun was beating down on us and we had a terrible hill (we seem to average one a day) but we pushed on. We can usually handle hills, hot sun, and wind, but not at the same time. As long as only one or two of those hits us at a time we do alright.

We were kind of paranoid about being on the side of the road again due to our run in with the police but we didn’t have a lot of options. We found a place that we are pretty sure isn’t private property that couldn’t be viewed from the road and set up for the night. We slept well and hit the road fairly early for our last day of travel into Eugene.

The ride was pretty uneventful… up small hill, down small hill, repeat… until we got a few miles out of Eugene and Anna saw a motherfucking bear (literally a bear, not literally motherfucking). It apparently ran across the road right in front of her and hopped over a few fences in broad daylight. This is our first time crossing a bear and it was successful, as long as you measure success by the low standard of “nobody died and nobody sprayed themselves accidentally in the face with bear mace”. But, here we are now in Eugene and we are really excited. In the next few days we are travelling by bicycle with a band to a show/party (The Dirty Dandelions), participating in the World Naked Bike Ride, going to Ninkasi brewery, getting some vegan comfort food at Cornbread Cafe, renting a car to go to Bend for more breweries, hiking, and the clothing-optional Terwilliger Hot Springs. It should be a lovely time.

From Bears to Beavers

Pre-Post: This is open and honest version of the events of our bike ride. If you are uncomfortable hearing about sex, drugs, profanity, etc you should check out our PG-version at www.10LegsWillTravel.wordpress.com . If you don’t want to hear about these adult actions please leave now. You can also check out our photos at www.facebook.com/10legswilltravel .

We ended up leaving Crescent City pretty late in the day (around 2pm). We had some errands to run and wanted to take advantage of the kitchen we had and cook some food. Overall our experience at the church was pretty positive. Katie, our primary contact, was incredibly loving and friendly, exactly what you hope for from a human being. Unfortunately, two of the other people we encountered were fairly rude and had an air of superiority about them that is all too common among some religious (at least in my experience).

Our ride that day was fairly easy, we had some rolling hills into the the of Gasquet and found out from the locals about a free campground on the Smith River… They also had my favorite beer. We do love anything free. The campground itself was actually a river access point that allowed people to stay for up to 7 days. If you drove by you would have no idea that camping was allowed and the local information really paid off. We had the entire place to ourselves and the river was a stone’s throw away. Despite the cold water we decided to skinny dip in the river, this was my first time skinny dipping and the cold water made it a short venture. It was more of a genital dip than anything because the three of us just kind of shuffled into the river until the water was up to our thighs and then plunged our groins into it. Talk about shrinkage…

That night we got some pretty good sleep and had a lazy morning. Some people from Indiana happened upon the river access as we were enjoying breakfast. They had stopped to take pictures of the Smith River because of how clear and beautiful it was. Part of me takes for granted growing up in the northwest, I am used to clear rocky rivers and greenery all around. Anna and Hans, being from St. Louis, are used to muddy and unclear rivers. I’m looking forward to the day when I am awestruck by something that they have had around them their whole lives.

We knew we had a rough day ahead of us because of the 15 mile, 2000ft hill we had to climb first thing, our highest climb yet. We had narrow roads, trucks flying by us, and sheer cliffs dropping into the river on our right, but we made it to the top. We were exhausted and a little sunburnt, but luckily there was a rest area right at the top of the hill and we had an opportunity to rest. I even took a little nap in the shade.

The next four miles were a piece of cake. We coasted (fairly quickly) down the hill and crossed the Oregon/California border. This is our first border crossing and really made it feel like we were making progress. Intellectually we know that California is a big state but it is nice to hit a milestone like this. So we are leaving the Bear state for the Beaver state, which I approve of because I think bushes are sexy. I was also raised in Oregon so part of me feels very comfortable and almost “at home” when here. After crossing the border we knocked out another dozen or so miles and found ourselves in Cave Junction, the city we wanted to sleep near that night.

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Oh man, Cave Junction turned out to be awesome. We arrived just in time for the end of a Farmer’s Market so we decided to check it out. Quickly we were approached by a girl with dreads who seemed really excited about us arriving on bicycle. It turns out Cave Junction is kind of a hippy area. We chatted for  bit and before she even learned our names she offered to try and find a place for us to set up a tent at her friend’s house. It didn’t end up working out but she told us we would be safe at a local county park.

Technically camping isn’t allowed at the park but Cave Junction keeps voting down additional funding for law enforcement so there is nobody working on the weekends except state cops. We talked to a few more locals and found out there is a strong distrust of government here and they prefer to handle problems on their own. Everyone in the community knows each other and they keep track of bad apples via Facebook and exercise vigilante justice if someone is violent or criminal. One of the reoccurring themes throughout the west is a sort of practical anarchy where many communities operate on their own without the state whenever possible.

After getting some gifted food and more information about the city we went off to the park to sleep. We awoke the next morning to find a park ranger wandering the park and doing general maintenance. He came over to us and let us know that the park is technically day-use only… and then told us about the cool rivers nearby and said we can stay all day if we wanted. He clearly didn’t give a fuck that we were there and actually asked us if we heard any parties or had any problems throughout the night. There were no parties but I did see some sort of giant cat that was about Higgins size, so maybe 50 lbs? I didn’t get a great look because it was dark but I think it was a bobcat.

We ended up staying most of the morning but hit the road again. The locals told us there were a couple of big hills ahead of us. It turned out they were greatly exaggerating and we actually handled them pretty well. Sometimes local knowledge really isn’t applicable to cyclists, especially when you have legs as impressive as ours. We arrived in the Grants Pass area in the mid-afternoon and found our way to the campground.

Things at the campground didn’t really start off smoothly though. I had researched campgrounds online and ReserveAmerica.com where you make government run campground reservations said that tent spots were “first come, first serve”. Not a big deal because there were a dozen or so still available. When we arrived to the campground there was a sign that said “reservations only” for tent sites. We were baffled. Apparently the only way to get a tent site is to ignore the website and make a reservation by phone… something nobody has any way of knowing. Strangely, you don’t need a reservation to get an RV site. I have no idea why you can show up and get a place for an RV (which requires electricity and water) but you need an advanced reservation to put up a tent on a chunk of grass. So, we were forced to get an RV spot for our tent.

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The woman working also didn’t know which places were reserved or not for the next couple of days and she told us they  may need to have us move if someone shows up for a reservation. I’m not exactly sure what all the job entails when you work the front desk at a campground but I assumed part of the job was managing the reservations. Apparently at this county park it is a fucking free-for-all. Oh well, we got settled in and relaxed a bit. The campground itself was actually really nice and right on the river.

The next day was a standard errand/work day. Anna knocked out some stuff at McDonalds (the only free wifi we could find) while I did some planning and Hans doing some shopping and such. Again we just brought Higgs into the restaurant and he slept under the table. So far we really have not bothered by staff or anything when we bring him in. I guess minimum wage employees really don’t care. Hans went back to the campground a little early and was able to sunbathe by the river. We definitely all need time to ourselves when possible and it is good to separate once in a while. I hit the campground next, hung out on the river, and then when Anna got back we got cooking and drinking. We really need to cut back on the drinking a bit because of finances but, as always, we decided to start that on another day. The three of us had a great evening cooking on the grill and getting pretty drunk (as anyone who is my Facebook friend could probably tell).

After some sleep we hit the road again and it was really fucking hot. In fact, it was so hot that the ladies declared a new weekly holiday, Sports Bra Monday, to add to the really popular Nipple Tuesday. Personally, I’m looking for the official announcement for Topless Thursdays, Free-Balling Fridays, and Bush Saturdays. Luckily we got some bike paths and even got to hang out by the Rogue River for a bit and have a picnic. After about 40 miles we got to Medford around 6pm. We are staying with my friend Adam and his wonderful wife Julia. I’ve known Adam since 5th Grade… so about 20 years. Shit I’m old. It will be absolutely wonderful to see him, catch up, and spend a few days relaxing and working. Oh man, this trip is the tits.

My Water Bottle Still Tastes Like Gin

Caution: This post contains adult language and discussion. This was originally posted on our bike blog “Barely Functional Adults” on May 27th.

Our time in Arcata staying with Belle and her roommates continued to be awesome. We were able to hit up a Redwood Curtain Brewing company and get kind of shitfaced. They are a new brewery but had some delicious beers. We kept up our normal pattern of getting a flight of beers and then having a full glass of each of our favorites… except this night we got two glasses each. Our metabolism is pretty high so we get drunk pretty quickly.

We left the brewery and drunkenly biked back to Belle’s place, except first we stopped by the local store to get noms. Biking drunk is not smart. Sometimes we are not smart. When we got back to the house we realized we forgot to buy more beer so Anna and Hans went back to the store, which was only a few blocks away. I took this opportunity to drunkenly comment on Facebook and offer to send pictures of my penis to anyone on Snapchat who wanted them… there were several takers. Some people requested it after I sobered up but I didn’t send those, not because I am opposed to it but because I kind of ran out of time and energy. Don’t worry snapchatters, there will be more opportunities. (Sidenote: if for some reason you want a picture of my dick my name is pneiger on Snapchat. I don’t even care if I know you… it is just a penis, no big deal).

While I was getting out some of my exhibitionist tendencies Anna and Hans were having their own little adventure. Their drunken trip to the store involved being hit on by a couple of guys, which Hans loved, and not-so-subtly stealing malt balls from the bulk bin. I’m sure they thought they were stealthy but were probably caught on video camera and a number of customers and avoided a meeting with the police due to the laziness of employees working late night on Saturdays at grocery stores. The cashier was less than amused by the drunk cyclists checking out for a second time in less than 30 minutes. Maybe he was jealous…

Anyway, Anna and Hans got home with the beer, etc but Anna and I decided we wanted to bang. We set up the tent in the backyard to have a little privacy. We actually don’t care about privacy that much (I mean, we went to the Orgy Dome at Burning Man a bunch of times and have no problem just being naked) but even though our hostess was pretty sex positive we didn’t think she would appreciate us going at it on the couch, at least not without a heads up. We were kind of interrupted by her roommate’s, friend’s dog who went outside with the roommate’s friend to use the bathroom. I wish I could say she didn’t know what was going on but the unstaked tent was definitely rocking and we were both too drunk to be quiet or care. Also, interrupting sex should be like interrupting someone while they are eating, maybe not perfect timing but certainly not a big deal. It is just sex. So, we had some vigorous, long, drunken sex and it was wonderful. It made my piercing hurt the next morning but it is still worth it… damn, I hope this piercing heals completely soon, I’m tired of having a sore dick after heavy sex.

The next day we joined Belle, her boyfriend, her roommate, and her roommate’s friend (ugh, I should have given them all fake names) at the Kinetic Sculpture Race. Okay, so Belle, the Beast, Elsa, and Merida (also not sure why I’m using Disney characters) were at the Kinetic Sculpture Race and we joined them. Of course, we got separated about 4 minutes after leaving the house but we move slow so that is expected, we caught up with them eventually at the first check point. The race was a lot of fun and we had a bunch of gin and ginger ale in our water bottles, so we got daydrunk. It has been a while since I have been daydrunk and I remembered too late that it tends to put me in a grumpy mood if I can’t nap. I’m not really sure what is going on with me lately, I’ve been kind of grumpy often. I think it is because I am introverted and haven’t had a lot of alone time, we have all talked about how we need to find a way to recharge alone and pair off occasionally to reconnect with each other. Oh well, just another thing to think about and figure out in this new lifestyle.

Unfortunately, we had to leave Arcata the next morning. Our hostess was fucking awesome… such an amazing person, I hope she is in our life forever. I know I say things like that a lot, but the truth is there are so many amazing people in this world. My favorite thing about our trip is getting to meet them and count them among my friends, and thanks to the wonderful technologically advanced society we live in I don’t have to lose them just because we live far apart.

We took off fairly early Sunday morning and headed north again towards Crescent City, which is the next place we planned on having a multi-day break. We got about 10 miles out of Arcata before we stopped for a quick break in McKinleyville. During this break Anna and Hans went into a store to get some stuff while I stood outside and watched the bikes when I was approached by a guy named Paul. He was wearing kind of dirty army pants and carrying a duffle bag and he started asking me about the bikes and such. After a short conversation he asked me if I knew anything about the McKinleyville area. I told him I didn’t and that we were just passing through, that is when he gave me a history of the area.

It turns out that McKinleyville has never been featured on the History channel because there is a secret military base 90 miles underneath the city. The only way to find the base is to look at the small stones scattered across the city that have numbers engraved on them. He showed me a few of the stones he had been collecting that day. When he emptied his pockets there were about a dozen stones, two quarters, and two caps that usually go on the containers that heroin is sold in. He later told me he collects the caps to keep them away from kids.

As I talked to him about government conspiracies, hidden treasure maps on the rocks, Bigfoot’s home at the top of redwood trees, the ancient Mayan engravings on the rocks, and several other things I realized that Paul was harmless, though not completely on the same level as most people. It is easy to laugh or dismiss him as some “crazy homeless guy” but really he is a result of the policies we, as a society, decide to allow. A drug war that would rather criminalize addiction instead of treat it. A country that lacks mental health help for those who need it. I don’t know if Paul could clinically diagnosed with something, I saw nothing more than some paranoia and conspiracies coupled with at least moderate drug use, but that doesn’t mean any of us should ignore the people in our community that need help.

Anna and Hans eventually returned from the store and the three of us got on our way. Paul gave me a stone with a Mayan bird engraved on it by extraterrestrials and waved us off. We knocked out another 15 miles or so before we came to College Cove in Trinidad. College Cove is a clothing-optional beach where we took our first biker butt photo for our GoFundMe donors. We are not really sure if nudity is allowed at the beach or merely tolerated but that didn’t stop us. The cove was absolutely stunning, probably the most beautiful beach I have ever been too, but everyone on it was clothed… it was kind of chilly so that is justified I guess. We waited until we had a little relative privacy before setting up the shot, dropping our pants, and taking the picture. We all really love to be naked and enjoy environments where that is supported or allowed, and we plan on many more similar pictures in the future, even if they are just for us. In fact, we took another booty shot in the middle of the road on a mountain pass just for the hell of it.

That night we camped at Patrick’s Point with a couple other hiker/biker’s travelling the coast. One of the couples was probably in their 50′s and travelling the 1500ish miles from Astoria to San Diego. Man, people like that inspire me. I don’t know if they are lifelong adventurers or just decided not to let age be a factor but seeing people who continue to rock regardless of age is incredible. There are so few legitimate excuses to not live your dreams.

We left Patrick’s Point onto a very misty Highway 101. The weather was wet and kind of cold… almost creepy as we coasted down the hill out of the forest. On the side of the road was an all too familiar site, a bicycle painted ghost white to mark where a cyclist lost his life. It is always sobering. Up in this area it was likely an adventure cyclist like us. There aren’t a lot of daily commuters or weekend warriors riding the misty highways through the mountains. The man who died was likely someone who knew the risks, and died doing what he loves. I guess that is a question we all must ask ourselves, are we willing to risk our lives in order to live? I know I am, though I don’t really fear death. I don’t know what happens afterwards, my best guess is that my time dead will be similar to the billions of years before I was born… but maybe not, maybe one of the religions or spiritual practices is kind of right but I’m comfortable with that too. It is probable that we will all die eventually, though I am still a transhumanist anarchist (neither death, nor taxes)… I think that humans can live without coercive government and will find a way to eliminate the disease of death, maybe even in my lifetime.

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Our ride continued over some moderate hills and beautiful environments (we even saw live Elk chilling by the road) into Klamath, a cool little river town with a strong native American presence. We ended up staying at Klamath’s Camper Corral. At first we thought we were getting a good deal, the manager (Roy) lowered the price for us and told us that there really weren’t a lot of options further north. He lied to us. When we left the next morning we saw at least a half dozen camping areas within 5 miles. The thing is, if he had told us the truth we would have stayed with them anyway. People like that, people who will be dishonest to make $25 are part of the image problem business people face, he put making a profit over being a good person… I guess it is possible he didn’t know there were other campgrounds further north, but given his 8 years living in the area it seems doubtful. Fuck you Roy.

We left Camper Corral fairly early today (Tuesday) and hit the road. We knew we only had 20 miles, but one big fucking hill, before arriving at Crescent City. Because of the circumstances Hans faced today (cold weather, fairly windy, sweaty from bike riding, and no bra) she has declared a new weekly holiday, Nipple Tuesday. She encourages everyone to let those nipples and areola’s show every Tuesday (or really any day) in solidarity. No shame in showing the nips.

The hill today was kind of tough but we allotted a lot of time and now are resting easy in the St. John’s Church in Crescent City. This wonderful church is on WarmShowers and they have a full kitchen, sleeping space, bathroom, and wifi for travelers. They’ve had over 50 people come through this year alone and it is a great resource for those passing through. We are actually here with four other people (two groups of two) so we are making friends. Our plans right now are to spend two nights here so Anna can work, we can restock, rest up a bit, and get some bike maintenance done. Then it is just over 110 miles over some mountains to Medford, Oregon to visit my brother-from-another-mother. I can’t wait.

Defecating on Immortals

Caution: This post contains adult language and discussion. This was originally posted on our bike blog “Barely Functional Adults” on May 23rd.

Part of my intentions for this blog is accurately share what we experience. Often I fail, that is the nature of writing, language, and I guess all types of art. What I am feeling or what I intend the message to be gets lost sometimes due to me doing a shitty job or because I kind of do a stream-of-consciousness style writing where I don’t proof-read before posting. There are some cases when the intention of the artist is irrelevant, in that case the art is open to interpretation by the observer… I don’t consider this blog one of those cases. This is supposed to be a true story with all the ups and downs of our little friend-family and I try to represent it clearly and accurately. I also try to represent things as we see them, not just as I see them. I fuck up though, my ego, identity, and such gets in the way on a subconscious level and I struggle to remember this is “our journey” not “my journey”.

So, after reading my last post I felt there was some stuff unclear and things were not portrayed as I wish. It is true that I was irked by the change in plans but that wasn’t because of the specifics involved, that was purely an internal issue of mine. It was one that I need to work on and the events are proof of how fucking awesome things are when you let go of planning and expectations to embrace the now. Jesus joining us turned out to be a major highlight of the ride and we all wish he could join us more and in the future. There are certain souls that you meet and feel united with, certain people who you think you can learn from and want in your life, Jesus was one of those people. Luckily, the universe seems to have a way of keeping those people in your life, call it fate, ka, ka-tet, power of attraction, or just human nature, but it happens. Strong bonds of similar material are not easily broken.

I will keep doing my best to portray our journey as a group, and not just as an individual. I’ll probably fuck up again but two amazing people, one dog, and a reader or three to keep me in line or call me on my shit. Also, I will call myself out because writing is what I love and I want to do it well.

Alright, now where were we on our ride… shit, I can’t remember so I gotta check the last blog post again. BRB

That’s right, we were in Fort Bragg and about to head out. The ride along the coast on Highway 1 continued to be beautiful and provide us with amazing scenery. It is interesting how you get used to things though, no matter how beautiful a site is when you first see it you eventually get used to it and it becomes boring. That seems to be an evolved trait for humans, whether it is a partner, food, or environment it doesn’t matter how much you love it you will eventually get kind of bored with it. The view along the 1 didn’t really suffer from this because the scenes change regularly, even the beaches morph from sand to rocks to cliffs and moving at about 8mph keeps things changing regularly.

Once we got to the Lost Coast we left the ocean behind for a few days as the route took us inland into the redwoods and over a bunch of shitty hills. We have started seeing a lot more cyclists similar to us. They aren’t dressed in bright jerseys with 5 oz bicycles, nope they are dirty, sweaty, with tents on their backs and huge smiles on their faces. These are adventurers who see the bicycle as a particular tool instead of the purpose of the experience. We’ve met Australians, Swedes, Danes, and other Americans plowing their way up and down the coast looking for a good time. Despite being fairly introverted we have had some conversations with these social rebels and it is inspiring. Maybe someday we can visit their land and get some riding in.

Most of our nights have been spent either stealth camping in random off-road places or using the state parks (which usually have $5 hiker/biker rates up here… fucking glorious). Off-road camping is our preferred because it is free, but sometimes there are non-monetary costs. We were camping under some redwoods at an abandoned park or something that a logging company made when gross struck our little family. Higgs was off wandering around off-leash when he apparently found some feces to roll in. He came trotting back with a grin on his face but was reeking of poop. The poop also had maggots in it. Poop. Maggots. Maggots in poop. Because we were off road there was not any running water to use so Anna cleaned him with baby wipes… so now our dog smelled like shit and baby wipes. He is a constant reminder why we never want kids. I’m pretty sure it was human shit too.

After finishing up Highway 1 (sad panda) we got onto the 101 and headed deep into the redwoods. Of course there were tons of tourist trap shit… “oh look at the magic Confusion Hill, you’ll never believe how physics is defied!!!!!” Blargh. I’m also not giving you $5 to look at a big tree you can drive a car thru when there are a ton of trees to be viewed for free in nature. We were only on the 101 for a few miles before we camped out at a local campground near Leggett. Leggett was a bitter-sweet place and is proof that Google is not yet omniscient. Supposedly Leggett has a market, hotel, cafe, and a gas station, in reality they have a gas station and a market 2 miles away up a big damn hill. The market was actually pretty good though so once we resupplied our food our spirits lifted up. It is such a mindfuck when you plan on arriving at a location only to find you have two more miles up a hill before your day is even near being done.

The next day we ended up taking a break in a town called Garberville, home of a weed college. Normally, that would be awesome. We aren’t really weed smokers but we support full legalization and usually get along well with those who smoke (or vape, or brownie, or however kids do the marijuana in this day and age). Garberville wasn’t a great town though, there was clearly tension between the large number of tye-died, scruffy dog owners who seemed to just hang out on corners and occasionally strum a guitar and the business owners in the town. There were “no loitering” and “no panhandling” signs everywhere. Ironically, there were also a lot of “now hiring” signs. The coffee shop we stopped at even limited wireless access to 1 hour unless you kept purchasing things. The feeling was the opposite of Arcata (where I am now sitting) where there are tons of dreadlocked, tye-died individuals but they are all working at coffee counters and grocery stores. There is definitely some grad school level sociological research that could be done comparing Arcata and Garberville.

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We left Garberville in the afternoon and took a break from the 101 to ride The Avenue of the Giants. The Avenue of the Giants. I swear, whoever named these places are awesome in my book. I feel like I am seeing signs for an old 90′s era RPG. When we got to the entrance of the Avenue there was a sign telling us where we were… only it was completely wrong (see photo below). The sign, which I assume was put up by a government agency, said that we were on the north entrance when we were really nearly 40 miles away at the southern entrance. As some kind stranger points out, that is the worst possible mistake they could make. This kind of highlights the difference between government and private market. Businesses certainly have errors like this but it is in their best interest to correct it as soon as possible, no business is going to allow a map, billboard, or other advertisement stay in circulation if it sends all the customers in the opposite direction. Government agents have no real incentive to correct this type of mistake.

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The Avenue of the Giants is an incredibly 30-mile route through giant redwoods. I felt like I was playing the Cruisin’ Earth arcade game, except instead of a humvee that shot flames out of the tailpipe I had a bicycle named Harmony… and instead of a shitty soundtrack I had a Spotify 2000′s Rock Hits… and instead of finish lines and bikini-clad 2D women I had the greatest fucking family ever, even though we smell like dirty hippy. But other than all that stuff it was just like the game, only better. We took a ton of pictures (check ourFacebook page). We camped out at one point under some redwoods, which is apparently a bad idea because they can kill you with falling branches, but it worked for us. There is a strange absence of sound or life under the redwoods because they prevent sunlight from really getting to the ground. Being without infrastructure means you sometimes have to shit in the woods and I did that on a tree that is over 500 years old. It is kind of strange to look at a living creature that was around before Columbus landed as you defecate on it.

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Leaving the Avenue for the 101 again was bittersweet. The highway is flatter but the views not nearly as beautiful, though crossing the Eel River over and over again was quite amazing. I’m terrified of heights though and got nervous sometimes while riding. I don’t know how tall people cross bridges, just the extra 3-4 inches that riding gives me makes me feel so top heavy that I constantly fear I will somehow fly over the railings. I end up taking up a lane of traffic out of fear, especially if the wind is blowing.

We found a campground in Fortuna to spend the night and rest. We had a good day, close to 50 miles, and really wanted a beer. Lucky for us Eel River Brewery was less than 1/2 mile away from the campground. So we showered, put on clothes that only moderately smelled like a locker room, and got ourselves some brew. I got pretty wasted, which everyone on Facebook knows thanks to my “Peter Patter” of constant stream-of-thought random updating that I tend to do while intoxicated. I’m always a little embarrassed the next morning but people seem to have fun, there was even a pretty thorough debate on shower sex and 69ing (awesome or overrated?) and the use of chains, ropes, and other BDSM tools in the bedroom/bathroom/bang palace of choice.

We kept on plowing through miles and arrived in the town of Eureka whose primary economic force seemed to be meth and sadness. It was in a CVS parking lot that part of my bike exploded. One of these days I’ll learn the proper name of bike parts but lets just say the insides of my rear wheel went everywhere… ball bearings, grease, and my dreams scattered around. Luckily there was a local bike shop about a mile away so Anna and I walked up there to see if they could help us out… and fuck yes they did. They hooked me up with a new wheel pretty cheap and this also seemed to help me with a derailer problem I had been having. We lost a couple hours but it could have been worse, if this would have happened on another day it may have been 50 miles or more to the nearest shop. We got lucky this time, but that will likely not always be the case. We have just accepted there may be a day when one of our bikes is unrepairable while we are in the middle of nowhere. Oh well, we will burn that bridge when we get there.

So, a few hours behind schedule but we arrived in Arcata where we got a couchsurfing hook-up from Jesus and plan on spending a few days. Our hostess, Belle, is really awesome and we all stayed up late drinking beers and talking last night. Her and her partner are definitely the type of people that we hit it off with immediately. Their home had all kinds of signs that we would get along, including an anarchy symbol on the calendar, a bumper sticker that said “Make Love, Not Babies”, and just a general open atmosphere. In fact, this whole city seems to have that type of atmosphere and we are looking forward to spending a few nights here. We even happen to be here when they are having some sort of statue race… it sounds like you just get to drink and party all day, which is amazing to us. After this we head up to Crescent City and into Oregon.

So, this isn’t really related to the ride but there are two things I’d like to share with this little audience. First, our friend-family was accepted to camp with “And Then There’s Only Love” at Burning Man. They are home of the Orgy Dome that was an incredible experience for Anna and I last year. It wasn’t really an orgy when we were there, more like a bunch of couples having sex in the same room, but it was so much fun we went back several times. It is great to be in an open, intimate, sensual, sexy place. It helps fulfill my love of more variety and strengthens our relationship, I’m sure this year will be a similar experience and we are excited to join such a great group.

Secondly, I want to recommend everyone check out the book Opening Up by Tristan Taormino. It is about non-monogamous relationships but I think everyone could learn something from it, whether you are polyamorous, monogamous, or something in between. I know it has really been eye-opening and informative for me as my partner and I navigate our monogamish relationship. It is an easy read and even monogamous couples could learn something about communicating and it can help us all be more supportive and accepting of our different relationship orientations.

A Dab Will Do Ya!!!

Pre-Post: This is pretty much an uncensored version of the events of our bike ride. If you are uncomfortable hearing about sex, drugs, profanity, etc you should check follow our PG-version at www.10LegsWillTravel.wordpress.com . This is a warning. If you don’t want to hear about these adult actions please leave now. This was originally posted on our bike blog “Barely Functional Adults” on May 16th. We are getting into a decent routine and pattern in our nomadic life so I may start doing some more original, non-bike ride related blogging here again soon.

 

The home we were couchsurfing at in Petaluma was an absolutely gorgeous home on a farm just outside of town. Our hosts were a great couple who had some kids in college and turned the extra bedrooms into a place for couchsurfers and such to crash. They made us a great curry which we scarfed down while making small talk but we went to bed pretty early. Part of me hates that we don’t get to spend more time with our hosts, they have been such great people but we are usually really beat by time we come riding up to the door. It is especially difficult when a host family has incredibly soft beds, blankets, and pillows… these ones were unbelievable. I have wet dreams about sleeping in them. I almost quit the bike ride and begged to be adopted. If heaven exists then it is filled with beds like that and glorious curry.

 

After a restful night’s sleep we started riding north again to the town of Sebastopol where we could stop, get coffee, and chill for a bit. The city had kind of a hippy vibe but was terrible for bikes… the roads sucked, the people sucked, everything made me want to get out of the city. And to put salt into our wounds a local food/drink place called Tea Infusions advertised a ton of vegetarian/vegan options, including a chocolate peanut butter cheesecake, but they didn’t have any. Apparently their website’s purpose is to create hope and inspire dreams only to throw them to the ground, stomp and spit on them, and then hit you in the throat with a golf club. Regardless, Anna got some work done and we continued on our way to Windsor.

 

The ride during all this time is kind of boring. The vineyards and rolling hills all kind of blend together and the lack of diversity makes the miles seem to pass more slowly. It has been pretty similar for days and when we arrived in Windsor we were ready for a break. Our plan was to go further that day but I think we were all pretty mentally exhausted and happy to grab a spot at a local sketchy RV Park that allowed tent campers. The park was filled with broken down vehicles, abandoned buildings, and overgrown fields. Basically, it was the beginning of a horror movie… but that’s cool, I love horror movies and know how to survive.

 

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Wanna race?

 

We were happy to get on the road the next morning and get on with the ride. We stopped in Healdsburg for some beer from Bear Republic and then moved on past Geyserville where we found a place to camp near a freeway overpass. I saw a skunk that night and stayed up way too late reading The Hunger Games (my cousin gave me a Kindle and I figured I’d read it before I wipe the thing clean and link my account… man, Katniss is one cool chick). Basically this day did not really have anything exciting happen.

 

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None of us got great sleep that night. The sleeping conditions weren’t great, I got too little sleep thanks to my unquenchable love for dystopian romance novels, and lots of critters came around the tent waking us up. We kept on moving and finally made it to Cloverdale where we were going to solidify our plans through a couple of days of riding that didn’t have any real cities. Our plans changed that day because Hans bang-buddy from Santa Rosa (let’s call him Jesus because he has an enviable beard, silky soft flowing hair, and I don’t want to use real names of people unless I ask) wanted to meet up with us for a day or three.

 

Now, I have a shitty habit of getting kind of annoyed when plans change. It passes after about 30 minutes but I tend to just kind of sulk until it passes. It sucks. I hate it. I want to change it but I’m not there yet and this happened when I found out Jesus would be joining us. The three of us had some kind of tense silent treatment and conversations during our coffee/shopping break in Cloverdale. I wish it could all be wonderful rim-jobs and rose petals but we are humans and that means we will sometimes get on each other’s nerves and have conflict. Luckily we all fucking love each other and are rational people so we can overcome any problems.

 

So, when we left Starbucks I was still kind of in a sour mood but we agreed to go to Ruth McGowan’s brewery (WE LOVE BEER) for a quick drink. As is often the case the quick drink took longer than expected because we met a kick-ass couple named Tidus and Yuna. They bought us a round of drinks, we talked about a bunch of adventures… they even gifted us half a joint and gave Higgs-Nasty a gourmet dog treat (which I didn’t really know existed). By the way, if you ever meet adventurers on the road and enjoy their company it is always wonderful to buy a round of beers or food or supplies for them. We love it. (Shameless Plug: Want to donate to us so we can fight off bears, drink beer, pay bail, and see wonderful parts of this continent? Want some cash to go to Karma Rescue where we got Higgins? Want a postcard from a random place or a picture of our biker butts? Check out our GoFundMe!)

 

After a couple hours at the brewery we hit the road determined to put down some miles, but knowing we had a shitty hill ahead of us. It was pretty terrible but we are getting used to terrible hills, they are just part of the experience and in some ways make us really feel like we’ve earned some of the amazing sights. We camped that night on a random spot about 10 feet from a road. It was another time when none of us knew the legality of what we did but we didn’t have a lot of options, besides we figure most cops are probably fairly decent people and won’t arrest us for trying to be safe. Regardless, I slept like a rock due to lack of sleep and nobody really bothered us except a small pack of coyotes (or some other dog) that howled in the distance for a bit.

 

The ride the next day was pretty easy, only a quick 20 miles to Boonville where we were meeting Jesus at Anderson Valley Brewing Company. Oh man, they have some great beers. Their Summer Solstice tastes like alcoholic cream soda, mmmm, I can’t stop thinking about it now. We had several beers, rested a bit, and got ready to go again when two awesome things happened. First, some random guy gave us a huge nugget of weed (I actually don’t smoke much weed so I have no idea if nugget is an appropriate description but whatever) that was like 1/3 the size of my fist. Welcome to Northern California.

 

Second, Hans met this girl in the bathroom who is a photographer and she wanted to take some pictures of us, including a couple of Polaroids that we have with us now. She was absolutely wonderful and a real pleasure to meet and pose for. I am usually kind of awkward when my photo is being taken but she had a calming effect and really got some great images of us. I hope she reads this blog and contacts us so that we can see the images when she puts them online.

 

After the great time at the brewery we all decided to have Jesus join us for a couple days of camping and floating on the river. He offered to take all of our equipment, including Higgins, in his truck so we could ride more comfortably. Oh man, what a difference. I had become pretty used to the 100+ lbs of gear I have and once I was free of it I felt like I was flying down the road. We made the 10ish miles to the campground incredibly fast. It was the tits.

 

 

 

The campground was a great little county park under the redwoods along a river. It didn’t allow RV’s which we like. Places that allow tents only tend to be a lot cheaper and not have all the unnecessary amenities like electricity and water at each campsite. We played in the river (Higgs first time), grilled up some food, and got a great night’s sleep before another day on the river.

 

The next day we rode without equipment again a few miles to a river access where we floated inImageJesus’ raft, drank a bunch of beer, and let our muscles and minds relax. We had been going pretty non-stop since Santa Rosa so a little day’s rest was perfect. None of us really wanted it to end but we had a few more miles to put down before camping again, this time on the beach as we got out of the woods and wine country for a while and back to the coast.

 

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The 10 miles or so before reaching the beach on Highway 128 was the best ride so far for us. It helped to be sans equipment but the beauty of riding through the beginning of the redwoods is impossible to capture in words. If you ever get a chance to ride your bike along the slight downhill on 128 you should do it, you won’t regret it. The ride is easy, the road well paved, the trees keep the hot sun off your face, and life is just so perfect. It really has made us anxious to see some more of this beautiful world and experience it on bike where you feel the wind, smell the environment, notice temperature changes, and really feel connected to nature in a way that seems impossible behind a screen or window.

 

The beach we stayed at was at the intersection of 128 and Highway 1. It seemed little known but fairly well maintained. The dogs loved playing on the beach (Jesus brought his two boxers) and we loved having a long afternoon to hang out around the fire and let our bodies rest. It was also nice to have separate tents so that we could have a bit more privacy sexin’ each other up. Anna and I clearly don’t have a problem with Hans being around but it was nice to not worry too much about waking anyone up. I know she was happy to have a couple days getting laid by Jesus as well. We left fairly early the next morning but Hans rode in the truck with Jesus while Anna and I hit the road on bikes for the 20 mile ride up the coast to Fort Bragg where we were spending the day and then meeting our friends Wakka and Lulu for a couple days in an Airbnb home.

 

Fort Bragg was a lot of fun. The weather was beautiful when we arrived so we went to the Glass Beach that had a bunch of sanded down glass bottles as sand. Jesus had to be on his way back to Santa Rosa pretty early so we said our good-byes and headed up to meet our friends at the Airbnb place, a gorgeous home with some gardens, animals, and probably the coolest atmosphere I’ve ever seen in a home. We have found there is a correlation between people owning chickens and being awesome (not roosters though, fuck roosters). I don’t think we will ever stay in a hotel again if there is an Airbnb option… the price is usually about the same but the atmosphere and amenities are 1,000,000 times better.

 

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Wakka and Lulu arrived a couple hours after us and we had lots of warm greetings, but our night was just getting started. We had some MDA with us and all decided to party a bit for the night. We actually thought it was MDMA but after taking it and doing a little research we were likely wrong. This is why it is important to use a test kit before trying a new batch of drugs. I usually have one but didn’t carry it on the ride. MDA and MDMA taste pretty similar, though the coloring was a little off which should have been a warning. We also heard from some friends who took some of the same batch and they said it was really intense/different than prior batches of MDMA (we were told they are Moon Rocks but I don’t think they were). Because of their warning we started off slower than normal, I took 100mg instead of the 150mg that I normally start a night of home rolling with and even that was a bit too much.

 

We all had a really good time though, despite the different drug. MDA didn’t quite have the euphoric or cuddling effects as MDMA, and it didn’t make you energetic, but we did get some cool psychedelic visuals and mental hallucinations where you kind of get stuck in your head. It also chilled us all out and we spent some time massaging, cuddling, and just enjoying each other. Hans and I also were able to talk a bit about our prior disagreements, which was really nice. We all swear by using MDMA to help resolve problems in relationships, open the doors of communication, and solidify love and intimacy. Fuck the DEA and government in general for taking this wonderful tool out of doctor’s hands. It is evil that they would keep medicine from people who are hurting. Ugh. I don’t want to go down that road right now, I’m in too good of mood and talking about those evil parasites who see prohibition of medicine as good always gets me riled up.

 

So, after a night of rolling (is it called that with MDA?) we slept in and slowly recovered from the hangover, which was substantially more than MDMA. We felt groggy and kind of light-headed but mustered up the motivation to go to North Coast Brewery and the beach again. The weather was a little ugly but we still had a good time. Once we returned to the home we got some more rest, I watched some House on Netflix, ate a pizza, and zonked out early.

 

Now we are still in Fort Bragg but camping nearby. We all needed another day or two to catch up on the blog, emails, work, banging, etc. Soon we will be on the road again towards Arcata where we will have more breweries, more big trees, and a nude beach (where we will likely take our nude biker butt photos that we send exclusively to those whodonate us a few dollars). We will take tons of pics and hopefully be able to update again soon. Much love!

 

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