Sharon's Ride Around The World

Spring Break


May 2

My year-long adventure around the world makes a stop in the states later this month.

Many of the 200 plus riders who remain will no doubt consider this a sort of "spring break".

When we land in Washington, D.C. a number of us will leave the group for a few days to be with family and friends. It will give us time to reflect on where we�ve been and where we're going.

For me, this trip has felt a lot like rapid eye movement. A special moment that many of us would normally talk about for years(like seeing the Pope during Easter and during a Jubilee year) is quickly replaced with the next special moment. We've been to 15 countries and five continents in four months. In that time what I've seen and done I will never forget but there are a few things I wish never happened.

I've become accident-prone. If there's a hole, I'll fall in it...if there's a curb I'll fall off it.

An electronic sliding glass door in Cape Town, South Africa didn't see me coming and hit me in the head. I saw stars for hours.

In Pucon, Chile, I managed to hike up to the top of a volcano and then fall down the side of it on the return trip.

I've contracted a sinus infection, staph infection, throat infection, exercise induced asthma and knee problems.

I've caused a couple of international incidents using gestures I didn't know were obscene. The "OK" sign means anything "butt" in some countries.

I've lost two pairs of sunglasses, a gore-tex rain jacket (it's on a train between Carcassonne and Nice, France) and bike parts (sometimes I wish my bike.)

I've lost my temper and my willingness to see--in no particular order:

  • a)another national monument
  • b)another cathedral
  • c)another Moroccan rug salesman

I've lost, briefly, the desire to visit one more country except my own. It's called being travel weary.

It helps to do what I'm doing now. I'm writing this on a park bench in a plaza in Sevilla, Spain. I'm watching the world go by at the same frantic pace I was trying to keep when I was trying to make sure I saw everything.

My spring break will give me a chance to take a deep breath, re-pack my bags the way I should have in the first place and consider what the next seven and a half months will bring.

I do know I'll bring more aspirin, band-aids and money.


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