Oct 10, 2009
What do you do after you get your first motorcycle? Ride to Alaska of course! (Turns out it’s really far away:)
Blog of the trip: http://luigicycle.blogspot.com/
Link to the map: Map
The blog/journal of the trip holds, the bulk of the adventure. It was a very personal thing to post. I nearly didn’t. Having kept a journal since the age of 12 or so, this was the first time making these pages or memories public. It would be a lie to pretend that when writing, that the thought of sharing these memories, with family and friends did not cross my mind though. There was a certain level of self censorship that I recall those nights scribing the day’s events by headlamp in the tent. Thoughts like, “should I write that?” “People might be expecting me to be having a better time?” “What if folks see me for what I really am?” “A worry wart? Scared of everything?”, “What if friends or future bosses read my words and suspect me an idiot?” Etc. You know the sort of thoughts. Dark future predictions shrouded in horror. But even with that negative self criticism, there was a thought, that even if these pages were converted to blog posts, I would have a chance to edit them in some form before sharing the experiences with the unknown.
But, when back in NYC, months after returning, and starting the process of transcribing the journal entries to blogger…..it became immediately clear that no filtering of the journal entries could be possible. Changing storylines…..and keeping the integrity of the moment….was a difficult task. I couldn’t manage to alter the events and still have them feel authentic.
While I have friends who are wizards with a pen, personally, it takes every ounce of effort I can muster to ‘write from the heart’ as I like to put it. To be honest on paper…is the same as being honest with ones self. Imagine writing lies in a journal? Self censoring your emotions, feelings, thoughts, fears, dreams, ambitions…etc? A journal is the one place where we can be candid! So, when I tried to censor the writings….to make myself sound cooler, or more confident…..maybe more outgoing…..or whatever fantasy I had of myself….the words felt…empty. It became a story about someone else. Detached. Not interesting.
So, I thought and thought about it. What WOULD be so bad about sharing the adventure I actually had? Maybe I’m not the most outgoing person. Maybe I am insanely shy? Maybe I could have taken more risks…..or been…..what? That was the question that I circled around again and again. Maybe my journey was worthy? Maybe, me, with my trepidations, and fears, and self doubts…..maybe I had just as much right to my experiences as anyone else?! And this last idea, it felt taboo! I mean, I did feel like I learned a lot. And the trip was something firmly etched into my mind….maybe I could just share the story as it unfolded for me…in all it’s predictions and imperfections?
Anyway. Wish I could have seen the trip with the eyes I do now. While I was busy comparing myself to the adventurers around me who seemed more confident, or were stronger, or more hansom, or more able to solve what ever the issue of the moment was…..there was the fact, that I was riding, everyday, my motorcycle, to Alaska!!! Who does that? It seemed ordinary to me back then. I dreamed, then planned, then did the thing I planned. Simple as that.
If you choose to read the blog, that is how I see it now-a-days. Like a written photograph. Riding your motorcycle to Alaska is well worth the effort if you can manage it. And you don’t need much it seems. Some reasonable amount of time to plan and learn what you think you might need to know. To gather some advices. Practicing some road skills could help, but is not strictly necessary. And, maybe this is most important, any sort of motorcycle is fine. As long as it’s in reasonable repair, and is comfortable for you, that machine will take you to the ends of the earth, if you dare to try.
Ride safe my friends!
The google gallery above is likely the best way to view the pictures from the trip. But this page seemed a little absent without some sort of gallery.
I was so excited for this adventure. There was a great deal of planning and learning before leaving. Also, riding a motorcycle day in and out was an unbelievable joy. So, rather naturally an idea of taking ‘mental’ photographs came about. Living in the moment. Enjoying the sky above me. Living outside constantly. Traveling so very far from home, alone. I did manage to take a smattering of photos here and there. It was a haphazard effort. Exception of the self portraits, most photographs were an after thought. Below is a curated gallery of the ‘best’ ones. Please enjoy the wilds of the North Americas!