Monday, September 16

bike extravaganza: the end

Kalamazoo - South Haven - St. Joe

The end of our bike tour.  What a bittersweet moment.  I knew that I wanted to get back home and see my family and friends, but I also did not want to leave this simple lifestyle.

Getting our bikes boxed up was the hardest adventure we had to go through during our tour.  We came to realize that America does not value public transportation.  The only place that would break down our bikes and place them in a box was on Mackinac Island.  Mackinac Wheels helped us pack up our bikes and were so very nice!
 Taking a bus through Michigan was quite an experience.  We met all sorts of people and It definitely was something out of my comfort zone.  Arriving to Kalamazoo was also a very interesting experience.  A cop almost arrested us for leaving our boxes unattended [which is a very long story].  Needless to say...the only thing I really enjoyed in Kalamazoo was Bell's Brewery!
 We dropped our bikes [that were still boxed up] off at a very expensive road bike shop to have them put our bikes back together.  They didn't really understand how our bikes were originally set-up and put our bikes back together the wrong way.  It made for a very uncomfortable ride.

But!  We did it anyways.  We rode 40+ very long miles on the Kal-Haven trail.  It was a hard pack trail and it was raining.  Rain + dirt = some very nasty bikes/legs/feet/everything.
After that very long trail we finally got back to South Haven.  South Haven is such a cute little town in Michigan.  We decided to just rest up and prepare for our last ride to St. Joe.  A whole 25 miles and we were done.  Even though we had a headwind on the way to St. Joe, we definitely rode pretty fast.  I just couldn't wait to see my good friend, Claire!

Claire [our good friend who we stayed with in South Bend, IN] agreed to drive up to St. Joe and join us for a beach day.  It was a great way to end our trip and I am so glad Claire was able to help us out!
This trip was a great way to spend a vacation away from the real world.  Living off of your bike is such a liberating experience.  I hope to do trips like these in the future.  

My partner, Trent, on this trip was such an encouragement to me.  Some days were more stressful than others and he was always there cheering me on.  

Always be a first rate version of yourself instead of a second rate version of somebody else.

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