As much as you can
As far as you can
As long as you can
Life's not meant to be lived in one placeI recently submitted an entry to a contest a company named Touratech is hosting. They are sending one adventure rider from each continent--with the exception of Antarctica, I guess--to ride Northeastern Madagascar with Touratech's founder Herbert Shwarz and his photographer/journalist wife, Ramona--two badass riders. The trip has been described as the adventure of a lifetime--no set schedule and cushy hotels here, but an immersion into the culture and landscape of the area. Part of the trip includes stopping at a school and giving students a lesson about each of the areas the riders come from. The contest required a three minute video, along with a written introduction and description, of why each rider is interested, and what would make that person a good team member. The task of creating a video was a bit daunting to me at first, but then I started going through material and trying to figure out editing programs, and it became downright overwhelming! I may, or may not, have run around the house waving my crazy muppet arms over my head. In the end, it looks like a completely amateur video created by a woman who had never done it before. However, it makes me smile to watch, and at the very least, I think I managed the "Be sure to show us your sense of humor" admonishment which went along with the instructions. I had so much fun going through all the photos, remembering the events and trips, twisties and terrain, and people met along the way. I have gotten to do many day rides in the front range and Rocky Mountains, and some really fantastic trips in North America, both with other riders and solo. I have ridden in beautiful places, ridden fantastic roads--some of which found me screaming in my helmet, "HOW IS THIS A ROAD? WHO CALLS THIS A ROAD!?!"--and I look forward to so many more such trips and so many more roads. But, one of the biggest things that draws me to traveling is the people I have met. Between meeting other motorbikes from all over and locals wherever I stop, I've made friends and wonderful connections. Thanks to Facebook and ADVRider, it is easy to keep up with people. Travel feeds the soul. Immersing oneself into the local culture and really taking time to talk to people broadens one's view of the world. We get to see that despite different cultures--politics, skin color, religion--underneath it all we are simply people. Experiencing this first hand allows for greater empathy and a greater ability to relate to others, and I haven't yet met a motorcycle traveler who regretted his or her decision to travel afar. I certainly never have. I look forward to the coming year of moto events and trips, and I send warm wishes to all those traveling now, or who will be soon. Enjoy what you find, put yourself out there, and enjoy the beauty this world has to offer.
Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many
of our people need it sorely on these accounts.
Broad, wholesome, charitable views of
men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one
little corner of the earth all one's lifetime.