Monday, June 22, 2009


As I look back on my trip I am overwhelmed with a feeling of gratefulness. In a strange way I don't think of it as a huge accomplishment. It is simply another journey completed. What many people do not understand is this trip always had a way out. I was constantly surrounded by people. At any point during the trip I could have thumbed a ride, used my credit card to get me just about anything and I even could have taken a flight or train if I got tired of being on the road. My trips in the back country seemed much more like an accomplishment because I had to rely on myself or the people in my crew.

I am not trying to downplay what I have just tackled - I will not forget the days that the wind took every bit of spirit inside of me leaving me in tears on the side of the road, nearly peeing my pants out of fear with the crack of lighting above me and no sign of refuge, starring up at countless intimidating hills, the serious and significant pain in my Achilles tendon and knee, my numb hands and feet on countless mornings when biking should have not been allowed, having to dig deep inside on the days when I did not want to jump on the saddle, hoping and praying that each passing car, RV, and 18 wheeler had a focused driver at the wheel and would not accidentally swerve 1 foot to the right, getting honked or yelled at by angry drivers or they days the universe just did not seem on my side.

With those things being said the overriding emotion and thought is how amazed I am at the generosity of my fellow American citizens. People love to help, and my journey gave people good reason to lend a helping hand. Nearly every single human being I met would have done anything and everything in their power to offer me support. The stories are countless - it seems that every blog I mentioned how many random acts of kindness these beautiful people offered me. It is an exciting message to shout from coast to coast that people in America, in a recession or not, are kind, generous and have beautiful hearts.

As I type these words in a state of gratefulness - I am also feeling sad and scared. The root of my mother's numbness happens to be a tumor that also happens to be cancerous. A bittersweet ending to an epic journey. I have to believe that the "bike trip magic" that seemed to follow me every day on my trip was not just "bike trip magic" but it was the universe taking care of me just like the universe will take care of my mother.

I can't say thank you enough to the hundred of people who showed their support in any and every way possible. I will pass it forward.


  1. Congratulations on completing the trip!

  2. Way to go, Brook. Thanks again for letting me tag along! You rock!

  3. What an amazing Life journey you've treated yourself to, Brook! I was overtaken by several things at my end and hadn't really kept up with your travels, but I just got to read about your exciting adventures! Congratulations, and wish you fulfilment in all your life endeavors!

  4. Hi Brook - I salute your spirit of adventure and I hope you know that all the beautiful things that came your way throughout this journey were of your own reflection. You have an open soul and an appreciative spirit and you extend yourself to others in such an extraordinary way. Thank you for blogging and adding your great photos; I looked forward to checking in on you over these past months. If you ever get down to Bradenton/Sarasota, FL you have a couch! - Lin

  5. Brook
    Thanks for sharing the bike ride adventure and pictures. I had the pleasure of meeting you outside of Pontiac, IL May 1st, and had a great time visiting. Crop planting and spraying is caught up just in time for me to ride the Iowa RAGBRAI. As John Wayne told Kim Darby "You got spunk". And so do you Brook.
    Lynn Rients
    Starved Rock Guide