Here’s the post that I didn’t want to write as I left home nearly four months ago.
Time for Brittany to leave San Diego came after a pleasant nine-day stay. We had plenty of fun on her dime and I’m thankful for it. My dimes can now be counted on a few hands, hence the first sentence. We woke, I did a load of laundry, a post, and we started packing. Checkout time was noon and Brittany’s plane was scheduled to get airborne at 12:41 pm. While in San Diego over the past week and a half, I had a chance to get a bit of a feel for the area and even though I found a dream job listing from Alpinestars, and I was in southern California, the mecca of motocross, I didn’t want to take another random job to get by. The dream job at Alpinestars would be perfect for me and I would be perfect for it. IF….. If my family lived in southern California also. I see no point in taking a position that would keep me away from them for years, no matter what the perks are. Family is the number one “perk” in life.
At this point, I know that I could pull off a position at McDonalds or something to get by and make this trip last a year, but how could I save money while paying for a place to live on that sort of minimum wage dough in southern California. It wouldn’t be fruitful enough to continue another half or quarter year of travel later on in 2012 when the weather breaks in the north. My plan now is to see one more site. The one, that I’ve always proclaimed to anyone who asked, as the thing I look forward to the most on this trip. The redwoods! I told my mom that no matter what I won’t stop this trip due to any circumstances until I see those mammoth trees. Now I’m hovering at just enough money to make it to northern California where the ancient giants live and back home, if I’m lucky. I’m incredibly excited that it is finally time! All I have to do now is ride up there. That gets me back to the morning when Brittany was scheduled to take off. This time, unlike the first time we parted ways in Lexington Virginia, I didn’t feel the sadness or fear of the uncertain road ahead. This time I was ready to go. Nine or ten days of being stationary in a city is all I need to get motivated to get out of there.
Brittany and I agreed to find her a cab to get her and her things to the airport since I had a really really long day of riding planned. We said our goodbyes. She took it pretty hard. I told her that I’ll be home in a couple of weeks and off she went. The time was just past 11am and I really needed to get on the road. The redwoods that I wanted to see were 848 miles north near Crescent City California. I told Brittany that I would try to do it all in one day. (Set very high goals and reach high results) My route would begin right in San Diego where I jumped on Freeway 5 north and end in Santa Rosa California, some 500 plus miles north after 9pm. The 5 freeway passes right through the San Joaquin valley, which is situated in central California, north of LA and west of San Francisco. It is a huge agricultural hub of the state. Completely flat farmland lines either side of the freeway and when you gaze further in the distance you notice mountains ranges that perfectly highlight the region. Some points during the ride through the valley reminded me of rural farmland that I rode through in Mississippi. It was strange for me to see folks working the fields and planting in February. Fruit trees were in bloom, massive fields of sprouts were poking through the rich soil, and grape vines for miles all kept me entertained. If not for this nice change from the concrete of the city, the ride through the valley would have been mind numbing. It is incredibly straight. The only turns I made for hundreds of miles were the ones I made to exit for fuel. Which I did four times. I’m sure the Goose’s gas mileage would’ve been stronger if I kept it a lower pace, but I was trying to make as many miles as I could before dark. The race with the sun was an inevitable loss for me, since I had such a lofty goal. By the time I made it through San Francisco, I had three monster energy drinks and it was after 8pm. The caffeine kick wore off at that point and my focus took a serious dive. I then pointed at the town Santa Rosa, north of San Fran, on my map and made that the new goal. I found a room at about 9:30 at a Motel 6 and crashed out.
My trip home will have to be at a much quicker rate than my trip out here due to the funds. Day 117 was a eye opening experience regarding the discomfort that my hind end will have to endure the next two weeks as I head east. 500 miles on the Goose is no fun at all. I am planning a trip to the northwest later on in the year. There is still so much to see.