I feel alone but not lonely. At ease. Simple rhythm. My mind is far from quiet. Thoughts ebb and flow. They aren't intrusive. Thoughts too fleeting to remember or write down.
Trees sway by the grace of a gentle warm breeze through the valley. Sound of crushing gravel underneath. SQUAK! TSKTSKTSK! A bird sings a song of alarm. Is that a magpie? Definitely a Corvid! Clever birds. Can use tools to solve problems. Friends if offered shelled peanuts. The bird flies off.
The mind can be a wonderful & horrible thing. An ally. An enemy. It's not always easy to keep the intrusive thoughts at bay. Depressed? Unimpressed! At the end I always win though. I get out of bed. A sheer win. It just takes me more time then others some of the time. Dark thoughts. Like a black dog that comes to visit for a while. This is why I ride. It strengthens my mind while I exert my body. Gain through strain. I need to ride. I must ride!
I haven't seen another person for hours. There's beauty in isolation. A simplicity to it. I cherish my alone time. And yet I love to be around people. I'm The Only Living Boy Im Wald.
My mind wanders while writing these words. Past experiences bubble to the surface. Focus. Riding over the Vaalserberg descending into forest. I go where no cars go. Bridge out? No worries mate.
Crossing a ankle deep stream. Refreshing my feet.
Hürtgenwald is breathtaking. My first German forest. The birds speak the same language though, thankfully.
I carry on while I finish my last bit of solid fuel. A liquid diet from here on out. The damage of recent floods scars the landscape. Feeling slightly like a disaster tourist.
Hike-a-bike is a word that comes to mind when the roads disappear or are damaged beyond use for two wheels.
Camper homes are being flattened by forklifts. Back over the Vaalserberg where three countries meet. I buy a well deserved icecream and bomb the last kilometres feeling elated.
Mom & dad calling me nuts while I chug two glasses of chocolate milk. Proud while they remind me of that one time I cycled from Hulst to Westdorpe. 19 kilometers. Way back when I was a teenager. I complained every minute of that. Today I rode 143 kilometres with 2190 metres in elevation. I didn't complain once.