Monday, December 23, 2013

4 Months on the Road Today

10,000 kilometers, 4 months, and still going strong!
Yesterday I hit 10,000 kilometers, today was my 4 month anniversary, tomorrow my firend arrives to ride with me, and the day after tomorrow is Christmas.  Wow! I must have been good this year.

Today, the 23rd of December marks 4 months on the road for me.  I left Barcelona on the 23rd of August and on my way home to Eugene, Oregon. This has to be one of the best, if not the best decision I’ve made in my life.  Yes, I have difficult moments, days with lots of climbing, riding on terrible roads, and long days.  Some days I look for an excuse to stop every 20 kilometers and others 80 kilometers pass so fast I can hardly belive it.  There isn't a day goes by that I don’t think about how happy and content I am pedaling my bike.  I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else!

The night before my departure in Barcelona, one last test ride....

Here are the statistics for The Loong Way Home during the past 4 months.  I have…..
  • Cycled 10,152 kilometers
  • Climbed 100,000 meters
  • Been on the road 123 days (95 riding days & 28 rest days)
  • Rode on 2 continents
  • Passed through 19 countries
  • Had 3 flat tires
  • Changed my chain and brake pads once
  • Drank more coffee than any other beverage besides water (111 coffees and 33 ice teas)
  • Slept in 67 hotels, been hosted 43 times, and used my tent 12 nights to camp
  • Had 86 days of sunshine, 26 cloudy days, and 12 days of rain 
We’ll see what 2014 has in store for The Loong Way Home.  I finish my SE Asia portion of the trip in Singapore at the start of February, taking the LOONG route of course!

Santa caravan entering HCMC

I wanted to mention my plans for the holidays as lots of you have been asking, worried and making sure I am looked after!  I’m never truely alone on this trip out on the road, but I do have company coming and I'm looking forward to his arrival tomorrow.  Ed, a friend of mine from Hong Kong, will be joining me to cycle from Ho Chi Minh City to Phnom Penh and we’ll explore the Mekong Delta and Southern Cambodia.  This year will definitely be memorable holidays for me, as is this unique year in my life.  The 30-degree weather and lack of Christmas decorations, makes the holidays seem like they are far off.  I did see one dancing Santa coming into Vietnam and today a parade of Santa’s on bikes, but that was the first sign of Christmas in SE Asia! I did however buy myself a gift for a mere Euro,....a Vietnamese coffee filter to use whereever I settle down after the trip. Hopefully that country will have condensed milk! On Christmas we will be in the delta and for New Year’s, Phnom Penh.  I haven’t had company for more than a couple of days since the first of my trip. I know I will enjoy his companionship, especially for the holidays.

Thank you to all my follwers: friends, family and strangers.  You have given me a lot of support during hte first 4 months and I enjoy hearing from you from all the different places in the world that you are connecting.  Thank you!  Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

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