In less than 48 hours, I will be roughly 80-100 miles into the ride! I really cannot wait. Tomorrow I am picking up Marlei and Katie from LAX and I can finally get some better photos than just things I see from the driver’s seat. I’ll have people to talk to, and I’ll be on the bike! I need to pull some data from Strava and update my riding journal, but I believe that I haven’t ridden my bike since last Monday.
I remember getting out to California in 2013 and feeling like the “homestretch” began. I had a lot of north/south riding (Anaheim to Phoenix to Denver to Texas to KC) but I was on my way back. It’s so nice to already be out here. Instead of riding away from home, on Tuesday, I’ll be riding towards home.
The last day had a lot of activity. I visited YMCA Camp Marston for about three hours and spent a lot of time playing with teenagers and children, talking about the ride, and so on. It was so nice to get active. I got my Frisbee out of the van and threw that around for a while, and then I played a lot of Ga-Ga, an unique twist on dodgeball. I actually won my second game, but generally did poorly. It was great to actually run and play and get out of the van.
Then I went to San Diego to Somewhere Loud, a nightclub. I met Bryan and Amber, the owner and communications director, respectively. Bryan saw a cochlear implant activation compilation video and was reduced to tears. So he is donating 100% of the profits from the bar to the Gift of Hearing Foundation, which the ride also funnels most of its money through to pay for implantation. It was a great meeting all around. I found a room and spent a while at a Laundromat, then went back to the nightclub at 9:30. I got on stage with Bryan at 11:00 pm, and all of the club-goers cheered very loudly for the cause!
If anyone happens to be in San Diego, I would recommend checking out Somewhere Loud if you like electronic music. Or even if it isn’t your scene, just go anyway and buy a couple of drinks for the Gift of Hearing!
It was a late night, but I only had to drive 3 hours to Chatsworth, where I have a beautiful host home right in between Advanced Bionics and the departure site.
I have kept busy enough that I haven’t even read the Wikipedia article for Chatsworth. That’s something I do a lot when I get to a town, I read the history of the town, which leads to one of those meandering Wikipedia adventures of knowledge. Like Brawley, California was named after a man called Braly, but he refused the honor, so they called it Brawley, which sounds the same. Fascinating. 36 feet below sea level sits Brawley, wow. Humans have lived there for at least 6,000 years. The 2010 census data is similar to the 2000 census data. Amazing. As you travel across the country, if you read the Wikipedia articles of all of the towns, you get an interesting chronological history of the United States as a whole. I guess it’ll be a reverse-chronological order as I am going west to east.