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21 June 2007

the loneliest road in america

tomorrow i'll be departing san francisco for the east coast on the second continental crossing of recontrip 2007.01. i've had an incredible time hanging out in the bay area this past week. colossal amounts of thanks to ryan and michelle and mia kate and chloe for their hospitality. i'll miss them all.

i've outlined a tentative route for the return trip. i'll be riding the loneliest road in america, route 50, through nevada and into utah before jumping on i-70 to golden, colorado. from golden i'll ride northeast through nebraska and minnesota and into canada, north of lake superior. i'll loop down between lakes erie and ontario and ride down to ligonier, pennsylvania. from ligonier i'll return to boston on a standard interstate route.

"it's totally empty. there are no points of interest. we don't recommend it. we warn all motorists not to drive there unless they're confident of their survival skills." : aaa spokesperson on the 257 mile stretch of route 50 between fallon and ely, nevada : life magazine july 1986

more information about the loneliest road in america can be found through a google search.

for.great.justice is ready.

i'm a little nervous.

posted by paul at Thu 21 Jun 2007 at 00:34:42 EST (-05:00) | comments (0)

19 June 2007

a scorched earth field

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i relived the heaviness of the pacific coast highway with ryan on thursday to discover a road still heavier, the nacimiento-fergusson which led us high into the mountains over the pacific through narrows and twists i'd never before. two missed collisions before we arrived at the checkpoint to the hunter liggett military base, a friendly man with a prosthetic ear wrote us a pass on pink paper and told us about his rides, and after a things to come stressed start of the magna we rode on past a scorched earth field empty but for a tank and a coyote. we were low on fuel and the magna began losing power as we turned right out of the base, the closest station eight miles away in lockwood. less than a mile later, the magna was no longer running and justice and i rode on past lockwood, relieved to find the most expensive fuel and brought back a gallon.

fresh fuel did little to revive ryan's bike and so back and forth on jolon road, five back and forths as i recall at the magna's new top speed of 45mph, to fayder's through the closed gate where a very sweet woman with two bottom teeth and her husband were not able to help us, and a pig, we left for king city and however close we were to throwing the magna over a small cliff or hiding it behind the teague avenue sign, we arrived at motel six with both bikes, departed for the grill where we found less than zero action, and returned with 748ml 2002 sutter home merlot contained in four tiny green glass bottles with twist-off caps, important; 1892ml natural ice contained in two brown glass bottles; 375ml southern comfort contained in one clear glass bottle; 946ml orange gatorade contained in one clear plastic bottle; 946ml of aquafina brand water contained in one clear plastic bottle; one turkey and swiss cheese sandwich, and one bag baked lays potato chips.

the morning after we attempted another return only to fail a few miles into bitterwater road, back to king city where ryan paid one hundred seventy-six dollars to rent a uhaul truck for the magna, up route twenty-five through windy roads and golden hills, finally to foxford in the evening.

this evening i changed the oil and spark plugs in justice in anticipation of the return continental crossing.

posted by paul at Tue 19 Jun 2007 at 03:42:09 EST (-05:00) | comments (2)

12 June 2007

to relive yesterday's heaviness

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yesterday was heavier than lead.

i'm going to relive yesterday's heaviness within the week.

i'm in san francisco now and the pacific is near.

this trip first only an escape from boston has become so much more.

i will post pictures.

posted by paul at Tue 12 Jun 2007 at 03:29:31 EST (-05:00) | comments (3)

10 June 2007

settling with power

leaving diego for francisco via the pacific coast highway. heaping piles of thanks to rob and kelly for their hospitality and whiskey and cake and tritips and gangstalicious brownies. i shall not pull full collective while settling with power and listening to thuggin' love.

posted by paul at Sun 10 Jun 2007 at 12:13:42 EST (-05:00) | comments (1)

04 May 2006

my inner sunshine

and so it begins. the continental crossing.

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the yellow line designates my path. g001 and g002 were refueling stops.

stopped at a bookstore before i left livermore and bought six books:

01. lonely planet usa
02. let's go roadtripping usa: the complete coast-to-coast guide to america
03. national geographic guide to scenic highways and biways
04. rand mcnally road atlas 2006
05. large ruled moleskine
06. lonely planet road trip route 66

gigantic thanks to both sets of parents for the birthday funds which helped me purchase these books and the new ipod nano i've been rocking, and to ryan, michelle, mk, and chloe for putting up with me for almost a full month in san francisco. thanks so much everyone!

i didn't make it quite as far as i'd expected, but there is no question that today was a glowing success. and sorry, but when rammstein kicks into the reise, reise chorus, one can't help but feel the power, can one? after consulting the national geographic book, i sliced from livermore toward the tioga pass through yosemite national park, but the nice woman (who i'm certain saw my inner sunshine through the leather) told me the road was closed. and i'd come so far, but i detoured to the south to avoid the park fee and encountered a twisting highway 49 through the mountains which reminded me of laos. drove by a restaurant/bar which seemed popular with the locs and stopped in for a delicious burger and fries, and i'm not really the burger and fries type, but i got hooked on in-n-out burgers in san francisco and now i can't pass up a tasty burger. walked right in and felt very comfortable amongst the cowboy hats and oldies music; my reservations seem to have disappeared over the past year. up the road from mariposa, i'm staying in a hostel which did not have any empty dorm beds but which did have an empty tent. a tent with electricity and free wifi. deluxe. kill. i left this morning a bit nervous, but with one day down, i'm feeling great. felt i rode well today and i'm excited to wake up early tomorrow to hit the sequoias and walk in the shadow of the valley of death.

posted by paul at Thu 04 May 2006 at 23:59:59 EST (-05:00) | comments (4)

ninth rider of the apocalypse

i'm leaving san francisco today... headed east. not sure where i'm going to end up tonight, but i'm aiming for death valley. the last leg of the recontour begins.

posted by paul at Thu 04 May 2006 at 14:35:10 EST (-05:00) | comments (0)

23 April 2006

the dreams of youth grow dim

i stumbled across this excerpt from sterling hayden's book 'the wanderer' in a motorcycle gear catalog:

"To be truly challenging, a voyage, like a life, must rest on a firm foundation of financial unrest. Otherwise you are doomed to a routine traverse, the kind known to yachtsmen, who play with their boats at sea. 'Cruising,' it is called. Voyaging belongs to seamen, and to the wanderers of the world who cannot, or will not, fit in.

"If you are contemplating a voyage and you have the means, abandon the venture until your fortunes change. Only then will you know what the sea is all about.

"'I've always wanted to sail the South Seas, but I can't afford it.' What these men can't afford is not to go. They are enmeshed in the cancerous discipline of 'security.' And in the worship of security, we fling our lives beneath the wheels of routine - and before we know it our lives are gone.

"What does a man need - really need? A few pounds of food each day, heat and shelter, six feet to lie down in, and some form of working activity that will yield a sense of accomplishment. That's all, in the material sense. And we know it. But we are brainwashed by our economic system until we end up in a tomb beneath a pyramid of time payments, mortgages, preposterous gadgetry, playthings that divert our attention from the sheer idiocy of the charade.

"The years thunder by. The dreams of youth grow dim where they lie caked in dust on the shelves of patience. Before we know it, the tomb is sealed. Where, then, lies the answer? In choice. Which shall it be: bankruptcy of purse or bankruptcy of life?"

posted by paul at Sun 23 Apr 2006 at 01:33:59 EST (-05:00) | comments (3)

21 April 2006

for great justice

there's been a change in plans. here's the latest:

for the past few weeks i've been running around trying to get everything in order for the transcontinental motorcycle trip so that i could make it to pennsylvania by 29 april 2006 (next saturday) for my friends' wedding. unfortunately, there are still some outstanding items (waiting on some alterations on leathers, some gps software, and a windshield for my bike) that have delayed my departure. rather than miss the wedding, i've decided to fly to pittsburgh on wednesday 26 april and then back to san francisco on monday 01 may. this will afford me time to travel across the states at my own pace and i suspect will be a billion times more enjoyable and a billion and one times more safe. i expect to depart san francisco for the east coast on 03 may 2006.

you heard it here first. for great justice.

posted by paul at Fri 21 Apr 2006 at 15:49:19 EST (-05:00) | comments (1)

18 April 2006

an emptiness within

the 22.5 mile smilekiller abel tasman hike in new zealand ignited a hellfire spark inside of me. i apparently have an emptiness within which can only be filled by more torturous tortuous trekking; i just submitted an application for the new york city marathon lottery. i'll find out in mid-june whether or not i'll be one of the 35k runners that will be running [walking? crawling?] in nyc on sunday 05 november 2006. wish me luck.

posted by paul at Tue 18 Apr 2006 at 02:10:44 EST (-05:00) | comments (3)

16 April 2006

a billion times of excited

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!rock! and !roll!

not only have i passed the california republic's official motorcycle safety and training program administered by the california highway patrol [!CHiPs!]... i am now the proud owner of a devastating 1991 kawasaki vulcan vn750 hellraising motorcycle [check it above. !DEVILHORNS! yep, vulcan.]. i love it when a plan comes together. i bought the bike from a supernice guy in redwood city for one thousand six hundred american one dollar bills and rode it back to livermore that night [my first baptism by fire motorcycle ride in the rain on public streets... in the dark, on the freeway (both against the permit stipulations... yikes. still waiting for the safety course completion certificate which i need to get my 'real' license at the dmv)]. tomorrow i'm going to start on a list of preparations for the X-USA trip... among others: insurance, dmv fun [registration and title change], bike tune-up, and miscellaneous gear purchases.

special thanks to ryan, michelle, and the girls for letting me crash at the common and for lending me their car and carting me all over the bay area on my various missions... and also to josh calvitron for answering numerous bike related questions.

happy birthday to me and happy easter to you! pow! i am a billion times of excited.

posted by paul at Sun 16 Apr 2006 at 23:26:06 EST (-05:00) | comments (0)

07 April 2006

for the first day

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i am now officially a resident of the california republic. all hail the governator.

this morning i successfully transferred my driver's license and am now code green for the first day of the motorcycle course on monday.

posted by paul at Fri 07 Apr 2006 at 23:21:48 EST (-05:00) | comments (2)