The Stick is Blue
Not Quite on a Roll

August 1 – 13, 2015

What happened…

Andrew writes: Setting aside the excitement for a minute, taking 10 days off the bikes in Calgary was just what the doctor ordered. I didn’t do a lot, I didn’t see a thing. Mostly I just spent the entire time on my computer. I’m so afraid to spend money, that playing video games all day long seems like the safest thing to do.

I’m glad that Amanda seems to no longer be allergic to cats. Our time pet-sitting has been really easy, and fun too. Having a kitty snuggling with us in bed adds a level of intimacy that we haven’t experienced before – I like it. Hopefully we can take more opportunities to house-sit as we travel around the world, and I’m definitely keeping my eyes open for a long stay somewhere in Central America this winter. I wonder what it would be like to house-sit for horses!?!?

We did a few equipment changes at MEC such as changing out a pillow, and returning a cycling computer that we were having problems with. Amanda received a new cycling helmet from Scott, due to the extensive sun damage that her old helmet was showing after two months in Cuba. Scott was great about the whole thing, and now Amanda is rocking an orange lid.

Yet 10 days I feel is probably 5 days too many. I’m bored of watching TV and playing computer, and eager to get back on the bikes and put some distance between us and Vancouver. Technically, if we needed or wanted to pull the plug on this whole thing, we’re still at a point where we could call my Mom, and she would be about 10 hours away. It’s crazy when I think about it; after one-year on the road, we’re only 1,500km away from where we started!

It doesn’t feel like a year. Sometimes it feels like only yesterday that we left. If time continues to fly at this rate, then 10 years will seem like no time at all! We’re already telling people who ask that Yellowstone Nat’l Park in Wyoming is our next stop. More cycling through the gorgeous Rocky Mountains, and getting to see the geysers which I hope are really cool. I’ve only seen pictures and videos so far. I did get an e-mail from Sonia (and Jimmy) about their visit to Yellowstone, and they said it was even more full of tourists than Jasper/Bannf, but hopefully by the time we get there in the autumn, that will have died down a little. In the meantime, I’ll just take things one day at a time.

Update: Except 10 days turned into 2 weeks as I had extended family from BC come into Calgary just as we were getting to leave. We ended up spending a few days with my step-brother which allowed us to get some family time in. This included an afternoon at the Calgary Olympic Park luge track, family BBQ potluck, and another family dinner another night for Vietnamese “pho” soup. Leaving just didn’t seem like a priority, and on our “designated” departure date, I pulled the plug just because I wanted to spend some more time with my step-family. Amanda was really considerate about this, and yet I know we’re both excited to get back on the road again.

Amanda writes:
I really wanted to accomplish so many things this week. Now that we had our new unplanned situation tagging along, priorities changed a bit. I started the week off by visiting a doctor on Tuesday and getting an ultrasound to better understand our predicament. I learned within 5 minutes that my body had already taken care of things; I had already miscarried. Phew! That’s the first thing that came to mind; relief. So while no decisions needed to be made regarding the long term logistics of our life, I learned that the next week would involve me taking some downtime to allow my body to recover.

I’m feeling foolish about having put my body through this ordeal and hope there are no long term effects. I’ve never been through this in my life so don’t know what to expect, particularly when we live an unconventional lifestyle. Spending close to 6 hours a day on a bicycle can be uncomfortable on any day, even without other stresses you put on your body. I just hope that this week of rest will be enough for my body to recover and get back to normal. And while I am relieved at the outcome, there are some unexpected conflicting emotions that turned up too.

The week has been great for relaxing and getting things done. I’ve spent a huge amount of hours on the computer working on our 1 year video. This is such a hard thing to do! I don’t want it to be longer than 10 minutes and I’m not a video editor. I’ve only just finished our first two months and I’m already beyond 10 minutes – I’ll need to reduce it fast. I’ve also spent a lot of time laying around which has surprisingly been enjoyable. Maybe part of that is my body needing it, but watching Yankees baseball for about 4 hours each day and snuggling with the cat and Andrew has been so nice.

We did venture out on one day to do some errands and Andrew and I were at each other a bit. While we have needed to kick back, his gaming for over 12 hours on one particular day put me over the top. While we were airing our differences he told me felt like he wasn’t “allowed” to do anything because he couldn’t spend any money. Where did that come from? My first thought is you don’t need to spend money to have fun and secondly, what do you want to do? We agreed when we started this trip that yes we’re on a budget, but not at the expense of not enjoying the world. At the end of our conversation I hope he heard me when I say, let’s do things! Let’s talk about what adventure lies before us and how much it costs and make a decision. After all, that’s how we ended up in Cuba for two months. Going forward I hope that Andrew feels less like a hostage to the pocket book. Maybe part of his frustration stems from the costs associated with seeing medical professionals in Calgary. In any event, I’m hoping we can start venturing out a bit more.

Today’s Photographs

The Stick is Blue
Not Quite on a Roll