Great Alaska Adventure: Back Home
Two ancient and exhausted bikers rolled into their driveway today, relaxed their death grips on their handlebars, climbed slowly off their dusty steel steeds, dragged themselves into their humble abode and collapsed in a heap, waiting for a beer fairy to magically produce the golden elixer that would give their groaning bodies new life.
Somewhere I’m sure that probably happened today. But not here. Not at my house. These two spry bikers are bright-eyed and bushy-tailed and ready to hit the road again tomorrow. Well, that may be a little bit of an exaggeration, but after 60 days on the road, 13,200 miles, innumerable slices of waist-enlarging pies, several frost-heave induced sphincter spasms, and battle scars from the monster mosquito gauntlet, we’re still in pretty good shape for a couple of old, retired motorcycle riders who just returned from the ride of their life. The bikes are unloaded and the washing machine is running. (It’s amazing how dirty clothes can get in just two months.) My beard is fuzzier than when we started. The weird tans on the backs of our hands are more pronounced. Marilyn’s injured ribs are almost healed. All-in-all, we’re not much more degenerated than we were on May 30.
Our plants are all alive, thanks to our neighbor Margie. And our mail is neatly stacked and the bills paid thanks to Brian. Well, it’s neatly stacked anyway. The car started up after sitting unloved in a dark garage for two months and all the household appliances still appear to work. It’s as if we just left yesterday, except I’ve got two filthy motorcycles covered with various parts of Canada and Alaska, four worn-out tires, a fairing with rock scars that look like the craters of the moon, and lubricating fluids that no doubt have the consistency of Canadian tar sands. Like their riders, however, the bikes will recover from the Alaskan ordeal and live to take on new challenges and new adventures.
Please check back tomorrow night and I’ll post a wrap-up of this trip, thoughts about aging and retirement, and dreams for additional cross-continent adventures.