Like a papaya inside of a used condom, like a phone thrown off a bridge, like a headless kitten on the side of a road in Missouri, like the presence of God inside a coffin, like a glass of milk picked up by the wind, like a teenager masturbating in a McDonald's bathroom, like the very best moments of involvement and participation that are free from evaluation and judgement, and thus anxiety; I sit on my bike and realize that I am just a guest. I luxuriate dumbly amongst the looted storefront of my own thoughts.
On a trip like this, when you're truly just a guest at every turn, nothing is more important than gratitude and humility. It's the perfect time to try to look at all sides - and to take no side. It's almost like being free from context. In fact, I think that one of the few ways one can be wise is if one remembers to exist from time to time without context. This whole riding a bicycle 4,000 miles thing is a great opportunity to do that. From a contextless place, it's so easy to let kindness flow, to be humble. And when someone says, hey motherfucker, get off the street (which has only happened once! O youth of Kansas), somehow it's not personal, it's not you that's getting burned. It was just some confrontational slang he's yet to shed from his tooth. It involved me completely in my desire to flip the little fucker off, but I just created that feeling without contributing it. This trip involves breath, mass, gravity, organs, and sensitivity to difference - not throwing the bird around.