Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Al - the missing biker

So where is she? - this biking companion that is going to join me on my ride across America?

In all my training blogs with all the details of my six centuries of training, I never once mention Al's biking prowess.

There's a reason for that.

Al is in Argentina...
on her study abroad...
..not on her bike.

In fact, her study abroad will end less than a week before our grand bike ride across America begins.

Not even worth flying her home to Indiana.

So Al will fly straight to Oregon from Buenos Aires.

Is this a crazy girl or what?

I will admit she is having a great time in Argentina.

They've gone to a local playground...
...painted a mural

...and see-sawed with the kids.

They've visited the mountains of Patagonia.

Her most life-altering experience may have been her one week stay at a small farm in rural Northern Argentina.

Here they grow their own food and make their own clothes.

The daughter rides a horse 2 hours to go to a school.

There are no stores - no electricity - no running water.

Here Al ate a real Michael Pollan meal.

She knew where everything in the meal came from - the veggies, the bread, even the goat.

I think it would change your point of view forever to help kill the goat you ate for dinner.
And, yes, that is what Al did.

This was not for entertainment.
This family once a week has to kill one of their animals so they have meat to eat.
This is how they live.

So Al went with the Mom.
She picked the fattest goat.
They killed it, skinned it, cooked it and ate.

Even though we all know our meat comes from killing animals, I think it would feel different to actually see and feel the animal die whose body is going to feed you.

Al is full of life experiences this year.


Biking across America,

Senior year of college....

...and who knows where she'll go from there?
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