Well, I made it through California much faster this time than last year. I visited fewer friends this year, partly due to the split second decision to cut inland. But I’ve surely met some great folks the past couple of days on my jaunt to Eugene.
A lot of people have shown their support and struck up conversation with me. Twice today, the opener went something to the tune that, “Hey, you missed out by a couple of generations.”
And then I (always) respond, “No, Peace isn’t just for the 60’s, it’s something every individual needs to practice, despite their age, political or religious beliefs. Peace needs to be upgraded. It’s pointless if everyone thinks it only happened in the 60’s”
I met two men today whose lives contrasted one another. One fought in Vietnam and the other protested Vietnam. They both said that the worst thing the “hippies” could have done was associate Peace with anti-war and to carry out their message in anger.
Dave expressed what it was like to fight for the country and have things thrown at him as he arrived back home. I said it sucks that the hippies did that because now to say you don’t believe in the war is to say you don’t support the troops. In conservative opinion that is.
We then together came to the realization that propaganda fuels that divisive message. The media fueled, conservative message is busy pointing fingers at people who don’t want the war, saying they aren’t patriotic, that we overlook how the government itself fails to offer soldiers the best support they deserve. And that’s coming from a Vet.
I could sense that Oregon was close, drivers became friendlier, aside from logging trucks. Everyone has been really friendly and one guy I talked to stuffed $20 in my riding glove when I was inside the restroom.
The lack of distance traveled is shocking to me. I’m making horrible time, but at least my cold is gone now. My front shocks are gone, rocked out. I had to remove my sleeping bag, groundcover and towel off the front rack. Usually they are fine, but with the shocks like this, there can’t be any weight. Handling was so bad going around the mountains that I panicked a couple of times.
It’s best to take it slow up to Seattle, where I have shocks waiting. The gear is now riding behind me-giving me little leg room but more stability. I probably could have covered the remaining 100 miles to Eugene by dark, but it would have been close. Dusk brings out the deer. Apparently it brings out lots of things to watch for, as Dave warned me. Visibility also decreases earlier in the tall forests. My decision was clinched after another guy said, “Ya, they like to run motorcyclists off the mountains for fun around here.”
I arrive Eugene Saturday afternoon, if anyone reading this wants to show me your hometown, please contact me.