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I wanna go for a looonnnng ride. Take this job and...

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I wanna go for a looonnnng ride. Take this job and...

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Old 08-10-12, 06:55 PM
  #1  
bluesativa
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I wanna go for a looonnnng ride. Take this job and...

So you're in your mid 20's, you've been slaving away fixing hot tubs for 12 hours a day in the frozen, windswept Canadian prairies all winter often getting soaking wet in -30 celcius weather (-40-60 with windchill), but you have a bit of money stockpiled. Summer comes and the long days make you wonder if there isn't more to life. You used to be a fun guy, but now you only work and smoke weed, making just enough appearances outside of you're hazy bubble to make yourself appear interesting on Facebook. What happened? You used to be adventurous. You used to take big risks for big rewards. You used to do something that scared you every day. You used to be COOL, man...

Soon this train of thought evolves into guilt. There's people back home on the west coast without decent jobs. There's kids in Africa who don't have any weed...

You walk outside and light a smoke (you only ever used to smoke when you were REALLY drunk), look up at the stars, and say from the bottom of you're heart to no particular higher power "Thanks. Seriously. This is pretty good. I'm full. I just drank a tasty micro-brew and ate a BLT with extra bacon, and now I'm enjoying a particularly satisfying coffin nail. I don't know how this ends, but if I'm just destined coast along like this then fair enough...

Then the unexpected happens...

Something answers...

"That's your excuse? Destiny? A BLT and a cigarette? Hey cheeseburger receptacle, I have news. You've grown a gut. Someday you're gonna DIE. People with a fraction of your resources are doing amazing things right now and they're feeling bad for you, man.

Newsflash, it's not you're lot in life that counts, it's what you do with it. If you can't think of 1 thing you want to do and then go do it, you're going to get re-incarnated as a mentally handicapped snail."

Well, I've always hated when people say "newsflash", but whichever verbally abusive god (or lesser deity) had contacted me was absolutely right. I could waste no more time.

Oh, right, I've been talking about myself this whole time, unless you too are living through a quarter-life crisis.

I quit my awful job, and moved my things back to the coast. I obtained a plane ticket to Scotland, bought a hennessy hammock, bought a sleeping bag, and gathered my bicycling gear.

It was going down...

So here I am. Scotland. I'm hanging out with family on the Isle of Skye which is probably the most beautiful place I have ever been to. Next week I'm going to drive back to Edinburgh and buy a used bicycle and panniers. I will then pick up any parts that i deem need replacement and point myself in the direction of Africa. I don't expect to make it there, but I sure hope to have a good time aimlessly wandering as only a hobo with a couple grand on a credit card can do.

So that's it. I'm here now so it's on like Donky Kong, so to speak (please don't speak like that), and I'll soon be on my way.

Oh yeah. I've never done this before. At all.

I can camp in the bush. I can fix my own bike. I can get limited amounts of money out of the magic money box.

...but can I do THIS...

I'm not sure. I've stealth camped before, but almost exclusively in places that were pre-determined and well planned minus a couple of exceptions.

Anyhow wish me luck guys and gals and any pointers are appreciated. I'm going to keep posting on this forum when I get opportunities along the way, so as we say in Canada, let's Giv'r.
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Old 08-10-12, 07:27 PM
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Sounds like an adventure, good luck!

Although I've been to Canada a few times, Europe a few times,
Africa, Asia a few times; and I never had to quit my job(s)
I think you just need a "vacation"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B60Ow0ZX72g
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Old 08-10-12, 08:50 PM
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wow, I actually cover most of your quarterlife crisis myself, (the jobs a bit different). I NEED TO START SAVING!!

and good luck to ya!

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Old 08-10-12, 11:37 PM
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A friend used to have side-job repairing hot tubs though much farther south without the freezing rain problem. He spends his $$ on fancy motorcycles but now makes some extra $$ by buying/fixing/selling motos. BTW this week Washington Post Travel had an article about car touring on Scottish islands: beautiful but be careful not to slip off road into muddy peat. Africa should be a nice challenge, haven't read very much about bike touring there.
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Old 08-11-12, 05:06 AM
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that's what your 20s are for - enjoy!
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Old 08-11-12, 05:50 AM
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Well, I'm sure you'll have fun.

That said, really all you're doing is avoiding work and traveling. Nothing wrong with that, since you're doing it on your own dime. But just keep in mind, it's hardly an epic journey the likes of which the world has never seen, or a spiritual quest which will Change Your Life Forever.

Like the rest of us, you're a tourist on a bicycle.

So leave the navel gazing behind in Scotland, and go have fun for a few months, before you have to go back to work like everyone else.
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Old 08-11-12, 11:26 AM
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Thanks for the replies and advice everyone.


I should mention that I'm not from the prairies, so quitting wasn't really about just the ride. If anybody has been there, they can tell you that it's insanely cold and then insanely hot. Moving from the West Coast to the wheat is like moving from San Francisco to Minot, North Dakota. I was eager to get home for obvious reasons. There's a tonne of work on the great plains of Canada and people only go there to pay for big trucks, or an education. I fall under the latter category.


I've worked hard for a living since high school, so I certainly understand that work is part of life and is inevitable. There's enough stashed away that I can go for a modest bike trip, then return home and go to school without having to work or take out a student loan. No allowance from mummy or daddy for quite some time so that's a rare luxury for somebody of my caste


This won't be an epic journey, but it may be an Excellent Journey. I don't need my life changed, just some direction. I certainly thought I needed escape at first, but soon realized that all I needed was, indeed, a "holiday"... and to get out of the wheat and back to paradise before I left.


I must say, I disagree with the label "Tourist on a Bicycle". I prefer "Temporary Vagrant", or maybe "Typical Ignorant North American".


And yes, it will change my life forever, because I didn't go for it on so many occasions. Now I have the bug and I know I have the stones to do what people on all these forums have been doing for so long in one way or another.


Afterward life will go on as usual, but with a bit more momentum and a lot more pride. All from an epic journey the likes of which I, myself, have never seen.

Last edited by bluesativa; 08-11-12 at 11:30 AM.
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Old 08-13-12, 08:37 AM
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Originally Posted by Bacciagalupe View Post
That said, really all you're doing is avoiding work and traveling. Nothing wrong with that, since you're doing it on your own dime. But just keep in mind, it's hardly an epic journey the likes of which the world has never seen, or a spiritual quest which will Change Your Life Forever.
I can attest to that. At the age 34 I was tired of the grind and begged to get downsized in the wake of a corporate merger so I could ride across the country. I had this vision of sitting on some mountain top and finally realizing what I really wanted to do with my life. I ended up taking nearly two years off from work and three long bike tours, but that moment never came. Then I got my old job back and have been here ever since.
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Old 08-13-12, 09:17 AM
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Another route is to realize that there is a time in life for everything. Your twenties, at least your late twenties, are about growing up and moving your life forward. Advanced education, technical training, or just working your ass off at something that makes you a lot of money. It's about self identity. And, what you do is very much a part of that identity.

Building a base early in life will allow you the financial freedom later to truely say take this job and shove it. As in I'm outta here forever!!!!

Or you can keep working, buy yourself a new Lambo and call it good!!!
There are no rules!
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Old 08-16-12, 01:57 PM
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Whatever you do, keep a blog. I like the way you write, and remind me muchly of a guy in the early days of Crazy Guy on a Bike (I think his name was Christian) who was able to interpolate philosophical stuff into his writing, making his journal way more interesting and worth reading than most of the other stuff posted by bicycle tourists.

You've worked hard, saved and chosen a path. You shouldn't care what others think on this forum. Go do it.

As a by the by, we've just spend a while touring partly by bike, partly by train, in Scotland, and even touched on the Isle of Skye. We enjoyed it all immensely.
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Old 08-16-12, 06:28 PM
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Have a good trip
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Old 08-16-12, 09:29 PM
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Yeah. Blog your adventure. You're pretty good at putting words together. Post a link here to your blog. And if you haven't already, check out www.crazyguyonabike.com.
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