Wednesday, June 24, 2009

While I was working with the computers, Justin and Amanda went up to Goshen to see friends. So when I finished, I got into the little white truck with the streering wheel on the right (of course, I went to the wrong door first) and started driving toward Goshen. I was starting to seriously love this truck. Driving it made me inexplicably happy. I sang opera (mostly the Duke's arias from Rigoletto). I turned on some music. I rolled the windows down. I had a private dance party.

As I rolled into Goshen, people would turn and smile and wave to me. If I couldn't cross the continent on my bike, this would be my next vehicle of choice.

The friends were avid bikers who also knew the way to my heart (she made me food). Amanda read one of my blog posts out loud, because apparently it was that funny. I talked about how the quality of the blog suffers because the people I write about are often also readers.


This morning, after eating yet another of Amanda's meals (even if not for everything else, those meals alone would have made it difficult to leave) and having yet another deep and long conversation with Justin, I headed for the stairs to pack the last of my stuff.

"Oh, Greg, do me a favor," said Justin.

"What's that?"

"If you write anything else about me, please don't sugar-coat it. I really want to read what you really thought."

The fact is, though, that I really haven't had anything negative to write because I haven't met anybody I didn't like. That's not the issue. The issue is that certain conversations I have, which would have been deeply moving—and easy to empathize with—had they been repeated verbatim by fictional characters, when attributed to real people and read by people they know end up being a nasty form of gossip.

I've had a conversation with a man that involved the quote "He doesn't like to work hard—but don't tell him I said that." I can't publish a conversation like that, for obvious reasons. Many of the best conversations are about deeply private inner struggles that people revealed to me because I was passing through—because I would listen and then be gone. Publishing those conversations for the world to read would be a violation of epic proportions for these people.

That's why I make do without the putting the best conversations on the blog. And there's no question that the quality suffers.


Temperatures reached nearly 100 today, and it was humid. When passing trees, I would take breaks in the shade. So I moved slowly, but was feeling surprisingly good. And I wasn't going through the water too fast. Still, I was careful. I had only finished one of my four bottles when I got to Goshen, but I refilled it at a gas station anyway. 10 more miles up a county road, I stopped in the shade to finish that first water bottle again, and a woman who was watering her lawn offered to refill it for me. By the time I finished that first bottle for the third time, I was almost in South Bend, where my friend Shaya lives.

I dove into his air-conditioned house. Easy, easy day.


  1. Can you post the approximate mileage you have traveled when you post?

  2. You're so sweet. I am glad you liked the crepes :) Hope you're having a great time in SB

  3. This is Amanda's little brother. Denise and Amanda have told me a lot about you, i wish i could have been here when you were around. if you ever need a place to crash in this area again, let us know. And if happen to need a place to stay in Nebraska, Wisconsin, Utah or Montana, Email Amanda, i have friends or family in all those places.