Pedaling for Peace

On April 15, 2012 I started riding my bicycle cross-country from Jacksonville, Florida in voluntary support of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation (NAPF) and the work of author and Peace Leadership Director for the NAPF, Paul K. Chappell. By July 4th, I had covered over 1300 miles to just west of Luling, Texas where a major mechanical failure brought this first stage of my cross-country journey to an end. After storing my bicycle and trailer with my aunt and uncle in Weatherford, Texas, I flew from Dallas to Santa Barbara, California to attend the NAPF First Annual Peace Leadership Summer Workshop. I then lived and worked in Santa Barbara for several more months before I returned to Jacksonville and sold off the rest of my possessions that I could to help fund a continuation of my journey. Starting June 8, 2013 and ending August 9, 2013, I rode from Weatherford, through 400 miles of the central Texas hill country, including Austin, Texas, back to Luling. It was at this point that a friend of mine invited me to work for a brief period in Pennsylvania before flying me back to Santa Barbara where I continued volunteering for the NAPF as well as for the Santa Barbara Bike Coalition. As of August 9th, 2014 I began"Stage III" of my cross-country adventure, this time heading south from Santa Barbara to San Diego and then east to El Paso, TX. It was there that illness, winter weather, and diminishing resources brought that leg of my journey to an end. After staying with another friend in Columbus, GA for several months, I moved "back home" to Kentucky to stay with my dad for a while and build a better "resource base" for future endeavors including review and further tracking and primitive survival skills training at Tom Brown, Jr's Tracker School , and a possible longer tour of the east coast, northern tier, and north west coast back down to Santa Barbara, CA.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

This Too Shall Pass

For all of you reading this blog, I am sorry that I have not been more frequent with my updates. In this particular case, I wish I had some more exciting photos to share. I've been downloading them from my digital camera to my iPad for the last several weeks, deleting the photos from my camera card with each download. Unfortunately, my iPad has been rendered inoperable as of the last iOS8.1 update and it is looking like a system restore is on the horizon through which I anticipate I will lose all of my photos. I will still have "Contacts" and the information I have stored in iCloud via my "Pages" app, but that looks like about it. Otherwise, I still have a jump drive with some of my photos from Stages I and II.

I have been struggling with my iPad ever since I installed iOS8 shortly before I left Santa Barbara, CA. Not that it wasn't a little cranky before, but this last update has caused major problems. I've trusted the updates I have been prompted to install in the past, so I had no reason in advance to be particularly wary of this one. Of course, it was only after I started having major problems that I looked for information about it and realized I probably should not have installed it on my iPad2, but it was too late by then. (Would have been nice if in the install update preview they would have mentioned that it was not suited for iPad2s or made it so it did not show up as an install update on my iPad2 in the first place!) Furthermore, since I do not have a desk top computer or lap top that I have used to link my iPad to iTunes, etc., I was not able to follow someone else's advice to re-install the previous operating system.

In addition, the iPad and I guess MAC operating systems have not synched well with this blogging platform. In the past I have had to e-mail photos (having them show up as individual blog post drafts), and then cut and paste the html code from those drafts into an actual post. It's a time consuming process that requires a great deal of focus on my part and I've not been able to bring that level of focus to bear of late, given my sometimes accelerated riding schedule and my desire to interact more with my hosts. I've also found myself more at ease interacting with people on FaceBook and posting simple updates there or on Twitter rather than spending so much more time and energy posting updates here. The fact that I cannot even  link this blog on FaceBook (because they have it tagged as "dangerous" for some reason) has also been demotivating. So, again, for those of you following my journey via this blog more or less exclusively, I apologize for not being more adept and consistent in the use of this medium.

I hate to say that some of this comes down to money. I have not been able to afford more than $25/month to pay for my "stupid" phone that I got via NET10 back in 2011 or 2012, and I have not been able to upgrade the phone since then. For internet service with my iPad I have continued to rely on hosts' internet or hot spots at places like Starbucks or McDonald's. And ever since I got my screen replaced in Woodway, TX (summer of 2013) it seems my antenna or receiver has not been as functional - i.e. I've had some difficulty even in using the WiFi that was available to me.

Nevertheless, having my iPad as dysfunctional as it has been was better than not having it at all - which seems to be where I am at right now. And, as of today, I have $ not a lot available to replace it!

As the title of this post suggests, I know that "this too shall pass." I will not let these circumstances stop me from continuing on with my journey, although I may not be able to keep everyone updated, either here or on Facebook, as much as I would like to. (I dare say in the back of my mind the thought comes up "I'm just going to have to do this [bike ride] all over again, but next time with better tools!")

For the record - I have made it as far as Safford, AZ staying with a WarmShowers host and borrowing the computer available to create this particular post. While in the process, this kitten came to join me in order to "suckle" on my wrist... :) At least my digital camera still works by itself!

I will post again as soon as I can. Wish me luck on the whole iPad restoration thing...

Yours in Peace...