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  1. #1
    QED
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    9 to 1: those odds aren't bad...right?

    On nine days out of ten, I know my life is on the right course. I am confident and know I can do this whole sabbatical thing and traveling around the world by myself with my bike. Then every so often, I just crumble under the magnitude of being 49 years old, female, pretty naive, and the enormity of giving up all my worldly possessions other than a backpack of clothes and my bike to travel around the world when I don't even speak another language. Tonight, maybe because I am tired and stressed and really really behind in everything that needs to be done, is one of those nights where I just want to find a safe place and hide in it. And yes, I am aware that my feelings are pretty normal given what I am attempting here. I am just looking for and needing some support and not to feel quite so all alone.

    okay...so I can totally do this right? That is what I need to hear. Give me courage loungers. In 3.5 weeks I can get rid of all the rest of my stuff, give up the keys to my apt, become homeless by choice, finish up my quarter at school and all my professional responsibilities and leave on June 7...right?

    This is a bad time to have a meltdown. I need an HTFU or two or a hundred.

  2. #2
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    First of all, you are not alone dammit. What are we exactly, chopped liver?? Harumph. We are your friends, however invisible we may seem.

    Second, I've learned in all these years that feelings of "dread" are often just adrenalin kicking in. So many times, the more I "dread" something, the more fun it turns out to be. That feeling before a 50-mile race against the clock through the mud, over the mountains. Feels like dread but it's really just the body getting ramped up for action.

    Sure, you could pick the easy line and do what everybody else does. Or, you could pick the harder line, maybe break a bone along the way, but it heals and you'll have bragging rights. (You've been on a mountain bike, right......??)

    Many of us that you have never met need to live vicariously through you as our asses grow ever-wider boxed in a cube punching contract codes into spreadsheets. You must do it for US if nothing else.

    .........did that help??

  3. #3
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    I've had this song stuck in my head since yesterday, posted the video in the "80s music" thread:

    Where do we go from here
    Now that all other children are growin' up
    And how do we spend our lives
    If there's no-one to lend us a hand

    I don't wanna live here no more
    I don't wanna stay
    Ain't gonna spend the rest of my life
    Quietly fading away..............



  4. #4
    haole from the mainland
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    HTFU! Hell, yes, you can do it.

  5. #5
    Cranky Old Bastard
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    What you are attempting will be an incredible experience that many will envy. Very, very few will ever get a chance to tour the world by bike.

    You have your youth and health and time to do it now. That's all you need!

    Concentrate on the personal reasons why you want to do this. Obviously, you have to do it for yourself.

    Don't sugercoat the fact that at times it will be hard to keep going. You'll need to be strong and will find strength beyond what you now think you're capable of.

    It will be important to keep your goals in focus and update them often. Make the most of every day.

    You will meet amazing people and have incredible experiences that will fuel your writing and conversation for the rest of your life.

    The experience will change you in many positive ways. You'll gain membership to an extremely exclusive club. You'll never be the same person again; you'll be even more unique and special.

    I wish I could go with you!

  6. #6
    QED
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    9 to 1: those odds aren't bad...right?

    Yes I have ridden a mountain bike. Yes what you have said helps enormously. And I am now adding that song to my sabbatical playlist that keeps me going during freak-out moments like this. I was so overwhelmed I didn't think to start it. Thanks Christine. That helped a lot. Thank all of you. I wouldn't have the courage to do it without you. I will feel better tomorrow,

  7. #7
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    Oh yeah, and 49 is NOT OLD. Jeeez louise.


  8. #8
    Cranky Old Bastard
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    I also want to point out that you'll never be alone.

    There will always be someone there when you need help.

    You'll make friends everywhere. There will always be others looking out for you.

    You'll make friends that will be riding with you for an hour or day or week.

    You'll gain many lifelong friends and never be a stranger anywhere again. How cool is that?

  9. #9
    QED
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    9 to 1: those odds aren't bad...right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Randy99CL View Post
    I also want to point out that you'll never be alone.

    There will always be someone there when you need help.

    You'll make friends everywhere. There will always be others looking out for you.

    You'll make friends that will be riding with you for an hour or day or week.

    You'll gain many lifelong friends and never be a stranger anywhere again. How cool is that?
    It is very cool actually. And you are totally right. I am going to have a great time. It is going to make me a different person. And I absolutely appreciate this opportunity, so many people don't get to even consider this as a possibility and I get to actually DO it. How cool is that?

    But it is also really pretty freaking scary. There is a reason that not many people do this. Look around you right now at this moment and think about disposing of all of what you see in the next 3.5 weeks. And think about the ambiguity of not having a home to go to at the end of your day. That is hard stuff. Usually I am okay. Tonight I was just...well I have my moments. Playlist is on and with all your comments, I am okay.

  10. #10
    Non non normal
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    You are going to thrive on this experience, not just survive.

    Most people never do this because they stay home so they can keep an eye on their stuff.
    "There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle." --A. Einstein

  11. #11
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    I read a book a while back: Where the Pavement Ends by Erika Warmbrunn. She did essentially what you're about to do, but right out of college, and without being a biker! She bought a green Trek hybrid and (mostly) rode through China, Vietnam and Mongolia. By herself.

    She said that being a woman was an advantage for the most part, since people weren't threatened by her and more willing to assist. If anything, they were simply shocked that a woman would (or could) venture out alone, unescorted, and didn't even have a husband.

    Very entertaining read. She not only lived but had amazing experiences.

  12. #12
    Eddy 53:11
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    Just remember, wherever you are, you are there.
    Live vicariously through yourself.

  13. #13
    half-fast
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    Sounds like you got your perspective back in line, which is good.

    I admire this plan of yours, and am even a bit envious (which is probably my least exercised deadly sin). I'm particularly envious of your courage. I am usually in the "all change is bad" group.

  14. #14
    QED
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10ae1203 View Post
    Sounds like you got your perspective back in line, which is good.

    I admire this plan of yours, and am even a bit envious (which is probably my least exercised deadly sin). I'm particularly envious of your courage. I am usually in the "all change is bad" group.
    Yeah, I am okay. It is funny how some things can trip you up and how much emotion and memories we tie to certain objects. One day, I lost it when I looked at a set of shaker boxes I have. My dad made them as rehab after he had his stroke. He gave a set to each of his daughters. They nest inside each other, each one a little smaller. My sisters have perfect lives so they took the ones that were "perfect". I lived out of state and the week I was home visiting him all Dad had left were the "imperfect" ones that he practiced on while he was perfecting how to make them. He wanted to make me a "perfect" set but I loved them. Each of the minor imperfections reminds me of him and his tenacity to not give up. He was a good man. I wish he was here.

    Last night, I was going through the stuff in my cedar chest. I have all that stupid stuff we save like my son's baby curls, my daughter's first ballet shoes and...my wedding dress. And I was just overwhelmed at both how much my life has changed and how much it is about to change.

    I am going hiking today to reset the compass. I don't feel too courageous right now.
    Last edited by QED; 05-05-2013 at 04:59 AM.

  15. #15
    We have met the enemy...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Christine View Post
    Oh yeah, and 49 is NOT OLD. Jeeez louise.

    Word!
    "When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking."

    (Sir) Arthur Conan Doyle. Scientific American, January 18, 1896

  16. #16
    We have met the enemy...
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    When my then-professor took me aside and asked me if I had considered going on to do a PhD I immediately self-disqualified. People like me didn't do such things.

    As he make it seem possible--I was overwhelmed--all the "What ifs?" came rushing in.

    He finally gave me the nickel lecture (I wish you could here the Brooklyn accent in my head that I still hear) and finished with:

    "Look---you won't die from it."

    So the acid test is--is the worst downside death? If not, then you should go for it.

    As he encouraged me to take the leap, he painted the worst-case scenario--you get to graduate school and you hate all the people in your class, the professors are awful, you are terminally lonely, and after a month of hell you put your tail between your legs and slink home.

    Then you sit around for a couple of months depressed and beat yourself up for being nine kinds of fool. And after a few months of that something else catches your attention and you dig yourself out and get moving again.

    This is true of your adventure too--if you hate, hate, hate it--you can come back, pick up the pieces and not talk about it.

    Point is--even if it goes south "YOU DON'T DIE FROM IT."

    And the upside for adventure is huge.

    (As a personal note, to finish my little story--even though I did not get to teach at the academy, I am deeply grateful for his lecture and that he got me dislodged and moving into a wider and more interesting world of experiences.)
    Last edited by paredown; 05-05-2013 at 05:32 AM.
    "When the spirits are low, when the day appears dark, when work becomes monotonous, when hope hardly seems worth having, just mount a bicycle and go out for a spin down the road, without thought on anything but the ride you are taking."

    (Sir) Arthur Conan Doyle. Scientific American, January 18, 1896

  17. #17
    Master debator.
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    Don't take this the wrong way, but I chuckled at your post, especially the line "give me courage loungers". The majority of us are sitting here behind our keyboards, working for the man, making money to buy stuff we don't need, trying to fulfill ourselves with things and objects.
    You're doing something that most people wish they had the courage to do, but very few do. Hell, I'll jump out of an airplane, ride my mountain bike past trees a foot away at 35 mph; but quit my job, sell everything, and see the world? I don't have that much courage.

    Good luck, and I bet quite a few of us wish we were going with you!
    "I felt bad because I couldn't wheelie; until I met a man with no bicycle"

  18. #18
    Windrider (Stubborn)
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    9 to 1: those odds aren't bad...right?

    You are the best QED.

    You have done more in your 49 years than most of us can contemplate, let alone do.

    If you weren't a little scared, you wouldn't be alive. And you sure are alive.

    So turn this around a little. Ask yourself:

    -why are you doing this?
    -is it still what you want to do?
    -why?
    -when you think about the answers, do you get excited?

    Lots of RBR'ers will be both living vicariously through you & available to help btw.

    When does the blog start? I think what you are going thru now is an important part of the story.

    Hugs

    Len



    "Evil....is the complete lack of Empathy!"

    ""We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit. " Aristotle

    No one is as bad as the worst thing they have done & no one is as good as the best thing they have done.........think of that when you feel like you understand someone.

  19. #19
    Misfit Toy
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    I can't add any more wisdom than what has already been written. I shall channel a friend of mine, a "retired" Death Ride coach..

    You can TOTALLY do this!


    And my inner Klingon says It will be glorious.

    It's all fun and games until someone ends up in a cone.

    Don't make me go all honey badger on your ass

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by QED View Post
    On nine days out of ten, I know my life is on the right course
    You're way ahead of me!

    Seriously, you're smart, sociable, young at heart, etc. Never mind the HTFU stuff, you can do it fine the way you are.

  21. #21
    hold my beer n watch this
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    9 to 1: those odds aren't bad...right?

    Quote Originally Posted by snapdragen View Post


    And my inner Klingon says It will be glorious.

    This!
    So no matter who you are, what you look like, or how far you think you are from your goal kit up and get started. Your friends are out there, waiting for you.

  22. #22
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    This thread got me thinking. I thought about a couple people (friendly acquaintances) I know. They lost the whole shebang in the economic downturn. They were laid off, lost their homes, had to sell everything, and I think one guy lived in his car for a month or so.

    However, I don't think the fear of having no choice but to chuck it all, is any greater than the choice to chuck it all. Both are precipitous cliffs above the unknown, and of great losses. When we lose what we know and, therefore, our whole context in life...it's hard.

    I think the only difference is in one having a choice and the other having no choice.

    R, if you get out there and find out you hate it, you have a safety net: you can call it off and re-nest. The whee-factor of jumping off this cliff will be wonderful, because the ground beneath is soft. You'll be fine. And you're not going to hate it.

    Love ya, girl!

    P.S., It's OK to shut the blinds, turn off the phone, and hermit-up for a while. Time to re-fuel "you."

    P.P.S., the story of your dad's handmade boxes is beautiful.
    Last edited by OldEndicottHiway; 05-05-2013 at 05:09 PM.

  23. #23
    QED
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    The perfect attitude adjustment

    Getting to see 3 volcanoes all at the same time by hiking to the summit of Mt. Teneriffe past Kamikaze falls. 3800 feet of climbing in 5 miles to reach an elevation of 4788 ft. The trail to the falls is great, easy for anyone. The majority of the climbing happens after the falls in the last couple of miles. Kind of pretty though from both the falls and the view from the top. It was worth the effort even if we walked probably about 4 miles in deep snow with no snowshoes.

    I put the pictures in a folder and just posted the link below. Look at them if you would like. Here is one if you just want the quick version. 9 to 1: those odds aren't bad...right?-p1030164.jpg

    http://sdrv.ms/13Xlb6x

    I can totally do this...

  24. #24
    RoadBikeReview Member
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    A certain amount of self doubt is a good thing. The people who scare me are the ones who never doubt themselves for a second, always convinced that they are right about everything. Self-doubt keeps you honest, makes you re-examine your motives and ideals, helps you work out some of the problems ahead of time, and sometimes prevents disasters. The important thing is to not let it overwhelm you and keep you from trying new things.

  25. #25
    jaded bitter joy crusher
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    Quote Originally Posted by QED View Post
    One day, I lost it when I looked at a set of shaker boxes I have. My dad made them as rehab after he had his stroke. He gave a set to each of his daughters. They nest inside each other, each one a little smaller. My sisters have perfect lives so they took the ones that were "perfect". I lived out of state and the week I was home visiting him all Dad had left were the "imperfect" ones that he practiced on while he was perfecting how to make them. He wanted to make me a "perfect" set but I loved them. Each of the minor imperfections reminds me of him and his tenacity to not give up. He was a good man. I wish he was here.
    Wabi-sabi - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    "[Wabi-sabi] nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect."

    "In the Japanese tea ceremony, the pottery items used are often rustic and simple-looking ... with shapes that are not quite symmetrical, and colors or textures that appear to emphasize an unrefined or simple style. In fact, it is up to the knowledge and observational ability of the participant to notice and discern the hidden signs of a truly excellent design or glaze (akin to the appearance of a diamond in the rough)."
    Fredke commented in your thread. You won't believe what happens next!

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