Yearly Archives: 2010

Downstream

In one of the many fine passages in Hermann Hesse’s Siddhartha, the young brahmin – contemporary of Buddha, the Enlightened One – is sitting on the riverbank. It strikes him that once the measurement of time is waived, the past and the future are ever-present – like the river, which at one and the same moment exists not only where he sees it to be, but also at its source and at its mouth. The water which has yet to pass is tomorrow, but it already exists upstream; and that which has passed is yesterday, but it still exists, elsewhere, downstream.

– Tiziano Terzani

Beat

Taking the early flight out of Guam again tomorrow. Work is never ending, and I’ll need to plan a longer trip here for next time.

The fun part is trying to make ourselves better, in everything that we do. Isn’t that what makes life interesting anyway? Without the struggle to make ourselves better people, without breaking the sweat which builds our character, the accumulation of time on your plate becomes meaningless.

Try not to run too fast in your hamster wheel – but if you have to, might as well have fun doing it.

Hot and Wet

Ran into a Thai restaurant awhile ago to satisfy a late night Pad Si Eew craving.

First lesson of the night is to pay attention. When a Thai restaurant asks how spicy you want your dish, medium means shit my balls spicy.

Second lesson of the night is to pay attention. When the table of 20 teenagers behind you scream in anguish when the staff tells their table that they ran out of water, medium means shit my balls spicy. I couldn’t help but overhear the commotion: “What? No more water? Call the fire department!” and “Brah look at my lips they’re so red.. It’s like I have an STD on my face” could possibly mean that the restaurant serves spicy food. Quite possibly.

Third, is to pay attention. Never leave your car window open while you eat inside a restaurant with tinted windows because you’ll never know when it’ll start pouring outside while you’re too busy sweating it out indoors.

Brah, call the fire department.

Camera Underground

Canon Canonet QL17 Rangefinder

… he found that if you are stupid enough to bury a camera underground you won’t be taking many pictures with it afterwards. Thus the story has no picture book for the period May 10, 1991 – January 7, 1992. But this is not important. It is the experiences, the memories, the great triumphant joy of living to the fullest extent in which real meaning is found. God it’s great to be alive! Thank you. Thank you.

– Alexander Supertramp

Hafa Adai

Sleepy greetings from Guam. Raining a bit. I need a new pair of slippers.

Hopefully I can hit the ground running hard, and make some wheels turn.

Manila, or Wherever We May Be

This space is my bleeding ground, where I allow myself to put my guard down and write what matters to me. Albeit sometimes, in a manner of cryptic tones that no one is designed to understand except for myself. Sometimes I like writing about the dreams I wish I could fulfill, about fires I wish I could pursue without the clouds of judgment. How sometimes you should just jump out and kick life by the butt. It is a neverending journey of trying to figure out what it means to be who I am, and it will never get old.

I always forget how awesome Manila sunsets could be. The wonderful thing is that you can remind yourself of beautiful things everyday. All you need to do, is sit still, and be quiet. Even for a little while. That all which is beautiful may hopefully last a lifetime.

Dear Nickel

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Because at the end of it all, it doesn’t matter what you did, but what you felt. At the end of the day, you have to do what your heart says what’s important. Because if you shut out all the noise that’s tying to disrupt what’s happening in the beat of your heart, then you would understand that it is the least you could do because it’s what you deserve. To know what it means to be alive, to understand what your heart says it wants, and to know the difference, to know that the hardest thing you could do is to be alive. To do it. Is all what matters. To live. To love. To live.

Throttle and Transfer

Finally installed a new throttle cable and a new transfer case bushing on the Samurai. A few weeks ago, the throttle cable snapped on the firewall, and while playing with the transfer case for a flat tow, I managed to get the t-case stuck in neutral (again). Got the parts while I was out in Oregon, and swapped them on earlier today – perfect since the day was uncharacteristically gloomy for the valley.

Test drove it to a body shop for a paint quote ($$) and a late lunch, and it’s running great.

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I need to stop obsessing over finding a cleaner tin-top than what I already have. All I really want is a (very) clean interior and a few performance mods to make it ride better than stock. Debating if it might be easier to just wait for a cleaner car to come along to build on. I’ve been scouring Craigslist and Ebay every 5 minutes, and it’s driving me nuts.

Hopefully I’ll have my act together by early November, when we are planning to have our yearly desert excursion to forge into the depths of the 4WD routes of Death Valley.

Balls of Steel

SF to PDX to LA

Balls of Steel: SF to Portland
Portland
Balls of Steel: Portland to LA

2,613 miles on the 150cc scooter. Can’t write without gushing too much about the intensity of pulling something like this out of the hat. There are a few images that stand out, and when you’re on the saddle for 10 hours a day pulling 400 mile days, there are quite a few to choose from in the pool. The best pictures are the ones outside the camera – inside the curve, through the fog, down into the view, simmering into the golden sunset, burning in the hours that toughen the soul (and the butt). The best ones present themselves in a split second, but are beautiful enough to last forever.

There were some rough moments related to boring straight-aways, cross-town traffic, soggy weather, nail-busted flat tire, smelly tents, strong winds threatening to blow me out the road. There were times when I thought I’d been pushing the envelope too far. But most of the time, it felt more like I haven’t been pushing it far enough. Life goes on, but only when you choose to move forward.

Those who wander far away from home, know it a lot better when they return.

Stay safe, and ride on.

Home

Pismo Beach

I’m so damn tired. I always feel this way after a long trip, but this one is especially exhausting. Put on so many miles and almost reached the Canadian border. This is an almost sure guarantee that I will pursue a cross country trip someday, as I’m probably only a few hundred miles short of actually reaching New York if I went straight east one-way. Will crunch the numbers tomorrow and plot the exact route map we did for the week. And of course, will post some photos. :)

You need to do something drastic if you want change in your life. If you don’t do anything, then nothing will change.

Border Crossing

Oregon Border Crossing

Basso and I actually made it all the way to the north western most tip of the lower 48’s, and camped around the Olympic National Park. Now, if you look it up on a map, that’s pretty damn far from home. We were trying to gun for the Canadian border, but barely had enough time and had to go back down to Portland to meet up with the weekend party.

I don’t have the numbers yet, but we rode an upwards of 1,200 miles over 4 days, and basically finished the entire stretch of highway 101 until it looped around in Washington state. Eventually, I will need to ride CA-1 from LA to TJ to lay claim to have ridden the entire mother loving WEST COAST. On a scooter that puts out 11.5 horsepower!!

I’ve still got more than 1,085 more miles to cover to get home.

What good is life, if you don’t push the limits?

Tuesday Morning

I need to catch up on a lot of things, and was hoping to have some time to sit down and write.

Unfortunately, I don’t. Except to say I’m taking the scooter on a 1,600++ mile roundtrip shenanigan with Basso in a few hours. Destination is Portland Oregon via motorcycle, camping along the coast on CA-1 and 101. I wanted to have time to map out the exact locations of all gas stations and potential campsites – but like everything else in life, time is in short supply so I’m just going to wing it and hope for the best.

I’ve finally accepted that these trips are not just ‘one-timers’ – there is a constant burning desire to push the envelope and scramble over the next horizon of adventure. This is an itch, that once scratched, reveals an even deeper hierarchy of need.

Time to feed the beast!!

Kathlyn and Dan

This is, officially, the best wedding I’ve ever had the privilege to be part of in my entire life.

Each day I wakeup, I thank the world for great friendships that continue to bless my life. I love you, Kathlyn and Dan. :)