It started off with a simple mission: World Domination.
It started off with a simple mission: World Domination.
I couldn’t have known just how real that would turn out to be throughout the last year of my life. I’ve now visited more countries than many see in their whole life and had the privilege of experiencing so many wonderful adventures — all thanks to Emma. But, as time goes on, my philosophy that everything is temporary continues to hold true.
I’ll be returning back to the States in late March to visit family and friends before taking off on my next adventure… because, if you have followed my movements at all, you know that I’m never content to sit still.
What’s on the horizon? A 1,000+ mile bicycle tour.
Mission: Redefine Reality
Unfortunately, in the face of world domination, I’ve been ignoring the concept of responsibility over the last year or so.
My mission this year is to find a way to make what makes me happy mesh with the reality of handling my finances and responsibilities. There’s still so many things I want to see, learn, do, and experience… how can I ever balance living precariously with adult stability of any kind?
The current answer I’ve created for myself is the combination of seasonal work and living off of my bicycle as I tour around the USA.
The Seasonal Work + Bicycle Tour approach solves several of my issues:
- It allows me to exist in the “real world” without any real bills to speak of. Food and rent are taken care of.
- It allows me to channel any money I make towards paying off leftover debt. (Even though it won’t be much, I can dedicate 90-95% of it to debt, the rest towards miscellaneous expenses such as the phone bill and my hosting costs.)
- It allows me to continue to travel, meet new people, try new things, live in different places, and generally have wild adventures.
- It encourages my minimalism, as I will be physically carrying everything I own with me everywhere I go.
- It naturally includes athleticism in my daily lifestyle. I love fitness, but I hate when it feels like an extra add-on to my life rather than just part of what I do.
What does a bicycle tour like this involve?
Once I get back to Southern California in March, I’ll only be in town for a couple weeks. While I’m home I’ll be scrambling to gather, organize, and prep all the gear and equipment I’ll need to bike my way up to the Grand Teton & Yellowstone National Park.
I need to be ready to carry what few belongings I have, as well as food, water, and the necessary camping gear to make the 1,000+ mile trek to the seasonal job I was just offered in the park.
I’ve been working on spreadsheets detailing the routes, gear, and other information I’ll need before I take off since September. (To say I’m excited is an understatement.) I’ve been talking to people who have done similar trips and reading bicycle touring forums and blogs as if my life depends on it… because, well, it really will once I’m out in the middle of nowhere with just me and my bike.
Preparation: So much gear.
The only problem with this solution is the initial cost of getting set up.
I currently have a bicycle, a sleeping bag, a camelback, and that’s about it.
So… What’s left? Well… it’s a long list, and I have it very well organized. No, I won’t make you look at the itemized spreadsheet.
Unfortunately I have about $800-$1,200 worth of gear and equipment I still need to acquire before I can safely attempt this trip. I have a few hundred emergency dollars in the bank right now, and I hope that it stays that way for when I return.
That leaves me really hoping I can find a way to raise the extra money I need.
OPTION #1: Freelance
I am hoping to make that money through some freelance gigs. If you or anyone you know needs web design, web development, writing, original music, or photo editing done — you know where to send them.
Me. You send them to me.
OPTION #2: Amazon Wishlist
If you really want to help me out, but don’t have any work for me… well, it’s going to be my birthday during my trip. You can definitely justify buying something off my very special Amazon Wishlist set up specifically for this bicycle tour.
Not only will it be a huge help for me, but you know you’re going to get to live vicariously through my trip because I just can’t help posting pictures and stories about everything I do.
** Note: Some of the items are pricey, but there are $6-$20 items as well and every little bit helps.
OPTION #3: Your Unused Gear
Alternatively… if you or someone you know has items similar to that list, and you’re willing to part with it, PLEASE let me know! I will help you pay for shipping or figure out how to get it to me, if it’ll save me a dime.
When it gets down to the end I will also be trying to source equipment second-hand and in all cases, find what I need as cheap as possible.
Where am I going? What am I doing once I get there?
I will be working the summer season in the Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming, just south of Yellowstone National Park.
The bicycle route will start in San Diego, CA and my goal will be to get as close to the mountains as I can in 30 days. I will mostly be camping on the way, but ideally I will also find some hosts from sites such as CouchSurfing and WarmShowers to give me a place to clean up every once in a while.
From there, I have a very generous friend who is willing to come pick me up in her car and make sure I arrive to work on time by going on a mini-roadtrip up into the mountains with me.
What about safety?
I have been doing a lot of due diligence on research and what a trip like this involves.
Please believe me when I say I am taking reasonable precaution! I have too much to live for to get myself stuck in a ditch unable to receive help somewhere… so I’m doing everything I can to avoid that sort of situation.
In summary: Thanks for being there for me.
The amount of support and love I receive from everyone on my travels and misadventures is phenomenal.
Your lovin’ keeps me going and makes me really happy that I’m able to share my life with everyone, and helps me stay motivated and inspired when I feel like the world is caving in around me.
My life is far from conventional and I’m still trying to figure things out, so it means the world to me that I have such a great network of friends and family who want to see me succeed… whatever Success means, anyways.