It is still sinking in, but we are super excited to be rolling.
We wrapped everything up yesterday in terms of work and apartment, and rolled away from State College about 3:30pm. One of my very best friends, Vishesh, rode with us for the 30 miles to our first camp. It was wonderful to have him with us, because the road was familiar to us but new to him.
Spring is starting, finally. We saw baby lambs, blooming trees, and wild mustard greens poking up everywhere. They are an invasive species around here, but they are certainly delicious this time of year!
We got in to camp around 7:00, and we greeted by more wonderful statistics friends waiting for us. They had brought food and firewood, and wasted no time in getting it all cooking. Thank you so much Jeonga (and Won) for all the delicious food, and Jason for dessert! I can’t believe that we didn’t take a group picture!
We spent a few hours chatting, deciding where we might in 5 years time (and who we might be with!). I think we will scatter across the country, but hopefully we can have a reunion with some sort of regularity. When they left the campground, there were a few tears…
It was a chilly night, but we were warm and cozy in our bags. In the morning the sun was out, the temps were up, and we had to once again tame the pile of stuff and get it packed on the bicycle. It might seem like a lot, but when I remember that it is literally all we have for the next 1.5 years… well, it doesn’t seem so much. Also, many items that seem silly now will be wonderful in Alaska. Like… the handwarmers, extra gloves, long underwear, etc. It doesn’t help how many food items we are carrying way too much of because we decided to eat them instead of tossing them. Like… 1.5 pounds of almonds, 1 pound of gatorade powder, and about 4 pounds of rice. Ha!
Now we are in Huntingdon at our favorite coffee shop / laundromat. After this, we will be on uncharted roads. Forward!