A Wayward Journey

Courtesy of Microsoft Office On-line

People that know me know that I love inspirational stories. I learn so much from the trials and tribulations that others go though and emerge triumphantly and as a better person. I try to reflect that in my blog posts on Beariatric.com. I see my blog as somewhat of a teaching tool. I don’t think my experiences are news shattering, but I think they have some value to other folks on weight loss journeys.

One post caught my eye on a cycling forum I frequent.  It mentioned that a family was on an epic journey that they were about to complete. There were not many details other than the family’s name. I Googled “vogel family cycling” and came on their website. Epic journey was truly how I would describe what I read.

The Vogel family (mother, father and twin preteen sons) have been on a 2 ½ year cycling tour from Prudhoe Bay, Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. They traveled the farthest that one can continuously through the Americas. They chronicled their journey in videos, photos, and blog entries. They home schooled the children along the way since both parents are teachers. They varied their cycling to enjoy the ride. Some days were long and others short. I urge you to visit A Wayward Journey, their web site.

A few weeks back I came across another cycling journal of the Bristol Family who cycled the GAP and C&O Trails from Pittsburgh to Washington D.C. in the fall of 2009. This is the identical route that Chuck and I are taking. I was inspired by this family of five with pre-teen children spending two weeks on bikes and exploring our country. You can read their journal here.

My initial reaction when I saw the Bristol journal was how they could take their children out of school for two weeks. The Vogel Family had their children out of school for 2 ½ years. After reading the journals, I was amazed at how much these children learned from the experiences. There is no way that they could have gained as much knowledge in the classroom that they did on the rides.

That brings me to Chuck and my ride. The part I look forward to most is experiencing the local flavors and traditions. Besides that sense of accomplishment that we will feel when we finish, I put a lot of value on learning about the people and places. The coal and steel and canal and train towns we visit are filled with a lot of history. In Maryland, we will experience battlefields and towns from the Civil War.

We may not be cycling for 30 months or with three children, but we will experience a lot of the awe and wonder that these families did on their trips. I get more excited about the trip as planning progresses and the time draws near. Now, about those training rides…

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