- Pants - wet
- Spare pants - wet
- Boots - wet
- Sneakers - wet
- Socks - wet
- Spare socks - wet
- Shirt - wet
- Spare Shirts - wet
- Atlas - wet
- Moleskines - wet
- Waterproof pocket - wet
- Towel - wet
- Waterproof motorcycle suit -wet
- Tent - wet, but was expecting that
- Sleeping bag - DRY
- Electronics - oddly DRY
Partially this is my fault:
- I didn’t close the air vents on my suit, so water got in, although that doesn’t explain why my legs were 100% soaked.
- I didn’t remember the rain cover on the Camelback until it was wet
- I didn’t think about putting on my rain booties to keep my feet dry.
Everything in the saddlebags is some degree of wet because the waterproofing on them is crap and the “Rain Cover” attempted to commit suicide the first time I tried to use it, and would have succeeded if I hadn’t thrown its drawstring through a carabiner “just in case” before setting off. The gas can tried the same thing once but failed because I put it’s handle through a carabener too.
The sleeping bag is dry because it’s in a dry-sack. Can you imagine how hard it would be to dry out a soaked sleeping bag?
I’ve holed up in a Days Inn. Pasta WILL be ordered from Pizza Hut this time. I haven’t eaten since the leftover breakfast I ate at 2:00 PM yesterday and a couple protein bars last night. After getting soaked on the way to the motorcycle shop I decided, “fuck it. I can’t get any wetter. Let’s keep going.” That lasted about 40 miles before I my stressing about if I should continue west or not with this whack starter combined with the chilly wetness and feeling a semi blow me four feet to the right when it passed because the water was so thick the tires were’n’t gripping well.
I have the rest of today and tonight to decide which direction to head tomorrow. It’s not just the whack starter, although i really don’t want to continue if it starts up again and I can’t fix it. It’s that I’m starting to question if what I’m getting from this trip is really what I was hoping for. If it were all like West Virginia I’d say yes. But, it’s not. There’s a lot of straight flat through the middle of this country, and I was expecting that. It’s just that I spend all day driving, get in with *maybe* an hour to spare before dark, have to set
up camp, have a mediocre sleep in my tent, tear down camp, and start again.
Without someone to share this with it’s a bit too much like work, especially through states like Missouri. There’s no time at the end of the day to stop and enjoy before going to bed. And, I miss having someone to talk to. I’m not a very social person in Day to Day life, but this trip has made me realize that I actually do talk to my friends a fair bit online, and while I don’t have human physical contact, I do have Bandido, and while it’s not the same, it is still contact with another living creature I love, who loves me in return. I really miss him. I miss weekend afternoons when we curl up on the couch together and take a nap.
There’s also the fact that I’m doing this in the US. There’s not much that’s different here. It’s just, more of the same. I’m sure the Rockies will be great but when I pass a town it’s just another town that’s roughly analgous to all the other towns I’ve passed through in my life. Very few of them are actually interesting to look at. Many of them are just depressing in their vinyl sided sameness. The Trans-American Trail ( http://www.transamtrail.com/ ) would probably be very interesting, but again I think I need company. The Scooter Cannonball Run ( http://www.scootercannonball.com/ ) would also be interesting, because even though you’re going through more of the same US places, you’re doing it with others in a friendly competition where every day ends with a big social meal and banter ( hopefully witty ).
So yeah, I’m seriously thinking about coming back. Next time I’m either going somewhere very different from here (India, Vietnam, etc.) with a friend, or doing a rally like the Scooter Cannonball Run, or maybe hijacking a friend for one of the great adventures offered by The Adventurists ( http://www.theadventurists.com/ ).