Branding the Ride

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<Jim> We’ve spent the last few days searching, formatting sizing, cutting, pasting and drawing to get a blog background and business card layout for the ride. ( We now have new respect for marketers 😀 ). Our daughter gets into this stuff, so she was a huge help. She took our ideas and ran with it. The cards are complete – QR code and all! (I’m still amazed by those things!) and they will be printed soon.

image“We may be slow, but we got a great brand!”

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Jumping in the volcano

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<Jim> It’s 2:52 in the morning on the day I will give notice at work – 6 weeks ago I asked for a leave of absence but was rejected.  My plan is to work one more month, to May 2nd. I never thought this part would be so hard. I like my job, I’ve had some awesome opportunities, I’m on a great project right now, great people, so many reasons NOT to leave, but, today is the day I metaphorically jump into a volcano.

Maybe that is a bit dramatic for this, but my daughter used that phrase when she left Michigan in her tiny car for her job in Alaska. It’s a referenced to the Movie Joe Vs. The Volcano. If you haven’t watched the movie, I highly recommend it. I even have a tattoo of the Joe v. Volcano logo to remind me that this day was going to happen.

We’ve been preparing for this trip for many years, Shawn and I have good careers and will be able to get new jobs, our kids have grown and are on their own, our bills are few, responsibilities are low, our dreams are many, we are hippies at heart!!! So this should be easy, right??   But I can’t sleep . . . Change, no matter how fun, is hard for me. I’m sure I’m making too much of this. People have told me this is brave thing to do. I’m not feeling so Brave right now!

I could keep babbling, but the best thing will to get some sleep and report back in the morning! .


and then…

So today I gave my notice and all went well, I told a dozen or so coworkers and all are very excited for me. All is well, I work (worked?) with a great group of people.

Maybe it was fate, but an old neighbor – who happens to be a road biker – passed us when Shawn and I were on the Tandem pedaling home. He said hello and Shawn told him that I quit my job today. “Well” he said, “that was pretty ballsy!” …that seemed to sum it up pretty well! What’s done is done, in a months time I will be unemployed. It gonna be a hell of a ride!



It just got real!

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We received our Adventure Cycling maps in the mail last week and after reviewing the route in more detail and seeing the elevation charts…  well, suddenly it got real!  I’m sure us flatlander Michiganders are going to be in for a rude surprise come May!

Lots of planning and preparation in the works as we explore options for health insurance, mail forwarding, packing lists and shakedown rides.  We were planning to do some camping this weekend, but many of the campgrounds are not yet open for spring.  The calendar says it is springtime but we’re still experiencing single-digit temps at night and of course there is still plenty of snow on the ground.  And the snow we have on the ground is not the fluffy, soft, squeaky stuff that we enjoy in the height of winter – this is crusty, icy stuff that could potentially put a hole in our tent!  After quite a bit of searching on the Michigan DNR site, we found a campground not too far away that is open for the winter and has some good cycling options, so I think we’re going camping this weekend!  This will be a good test for our new sleeping bags, our cold weather preparation and our packing skills!  🙂

Shel Silverstein “Frozen Dream”

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Here’s a post to kick off Rathbike!!

When our kids were little, we did a lot of bedtime reading out of “The Funny Poem books” – Shel Silverstein’s books.  Now the kids are grown and I have wonderful memories of time spent reading to them – and raising them.  There was one poem I found particularly poignant – “Frozen Dream” and it has become even more significant as I ponder this upcoming trip.  Here is how the poem goes:


“I’ll take the dream I had last night
And put it in my freezer,
So someday long and far away
When I’m an old grey geezer,
I’ll take it out and thaw it out,
This lovely dream I’ve frozen,
And boil it up and sit me down
And dip my old cold toes in.”

We’re looking forward to living our dream this summer.  This blog will help us put it in our freezer.  Then when we’re old grey geezers – and we’re well on our way now – we’ll dip our old cold toes in.