Friday, 5 November 2010

The "Big Picture"

This entire trip I was so incredibly encouraged by people I encountered. The guys who came to help me change my tire in Burkina, the kindness and generosity of the guys at Burkina Manganese, the constant parade of kids giving me thumbs up, clapping, and screaming "RALLY!", our wonderful Dogon guide Gabriel, Miranda and Shindook, Mac, the Norwegian fellows (heaven help me remember their unique names!), the Europeans who seemed inspired by our journey, and the slew of Tuaregs and Muslims who showed me love and respect when they were the ones who were said to be those who wanted to abduct and kill me. It was an amazing time of culture, learning tons about the uniqueness of Mali. It was an amazing ride; pushing my bike and my body to it's limits, I had so much fun I lost 13lbs in 8 days and didn't even know it! I smiled countless times at the thrill of having my hands glued to the throttle. It was an amazing start of a friendship; born between JJ and I, who both come from different worlds but found unity in the challenge of adventure. And finally it was my pilgrimage. I'd left with the mission to be changed on the journey. I think I was more changed at some points than others but there's no doubt I returned different than when I left. I thought about those I love more than any other time in my life and had hours of uninterrupted time to tone out the roar of the motor and tone into the voice of God. I had someone ask me if I went just for the sake of going and I can say without a doubt "maybe." I went because I knew the trip in itself would be awesome but I pushed everyday to be changed, to reflect, and to repent. I found joy in telling people what I do and realized how much I love my wife, job, and teammates here. I even found greater joy than ever in sharing my faith. So for you skeptics I'll tell you "no, I didn't go just to go" but for all you guys who've ever ridden until your strength gave out, you'll understand the other part of the story others will never be able to understand. So that's it, Togo to Timbuktu is over but I doubt adventure riding is.


Post a Comment