Even though I will not be doing any organized or long-distance bicycle riding this summer, it will be full of many events. In April, I am giving a keynote speech to QUOTA international, which I am humbled to do. It is the longest speech I have ever done. I just hope I can share a message of inspiration and motivation to make a change in the world.
Last summer, I did a short, three-day ride to Altoona PA to attend a minor-league baseball game. A lot of the riding was in the Appalachian foothills, which is always challenging. We had more than 200 people come out in support, and it helped to galvanize a new Hearing Loss Association chapter in Altoona. Due to the success of that event, I will be returning to Altoona for a game on May 20.
In June I am driving to Durham and Atlanta for another couple of events. Dr. Howard Francis, one of the biggest Jacob’s Ride supporters, has moved from Johns Hopkins to Duke. We are hoping to have a coming-together of the hearing loss community there at a Durham Bulls baseball game. I am also looking forward to seeing Med-El’s US headquarters, also in Durham.
From Durham, I will head to Atlanta to see a brand-new ballpark. We had a very successful event at Turner Field about 4 years ago, and we are hoping to replicate that success. I will not be riding my bike. The decision was difficult since I have historically ridden my bicycle to these sorts of things. But after a lot of deliberation, I will be happier by doing these events faster. I will be more energized and can spend more time with people rather than in isolation on the road.
In other news, I’m still working hard at trying to balance a 40-hour work week with a social life and trying to make changes to the website and transition Jacob’s Ride into a resource center and information hub. I wish I had another 40 hours a week to spare, I really do. Sometime, the biggest resentment in my life is that the Earth spins around so fast and there are not enough hours in the day! Just grateful to spend a lot of time making connections and seeing long-time supporters this summer and not having to trudge on the bicycle.