That's what the place is called that people continually return to after any outing. Home after vacation, funeral, shopping, hospital, or a walk in the park is there waiting to give comfort. I've had several "Homes" in my life which causes me to wonder if they are still my home? The house lived in growing up was in Wyandanch NY, the house my kids came home to after birth was in Ronkonkoma NY, then the house of healing in Lake Havasu AZ, there were several houses in Kingman AZ, sort of a house in Clairmont CA during the divorce, then Phoenix AZ during my second career, lastly the current one in Flagstaff AZ. Actually there were several house in these towns, but there seems one that was really "home." There were a few that were shared with girlfriends that were called "home," but never felt like it.
Salisbury in England feels like home even though the "Home" it self is currently in the next room waiting to be used again; a tent. Walking down the streets of Salisbury is a comforting as returning to the building called home. That brings us to the present. After spending a week in Phoenix at my children's homes I'm back in Flagstaff. Work that creates the money for my journeys to England are calling. This home needs some fixing up and cleaning up so it complies with the rules of the community. Why it is in such disrepair is a whole story in itself, which maybe I'll write about some time.
So the demands of come crowing around after six weeks of doing only things thought of. Now the goals thought about for this last trip were not reached. Some might consider that failure, some just the way life is. For me it is personal growth and learning that not completed goals represent. Next year the goals will still be there if I chose to chase them, or maybe a new one will come along. One semi new goal that is circling around is riding from one end of England to the other, like Paul did. Maybe a trip of only riding, no trains, would certainly be interesting. Or, who knows maybe someone will step up to ride with me which would be a completely new experience.
Upon returning home questions are asked about the trip which at times are hard to answer.
"Did you have fun?"
This is a difficult question because of the person asking context abound the word "fun." Is it fun to ride 77 miles on a bike in the rain fearful of falling into a canal? Is it fun to ride up a steep hill on a bike weighting about 100 pounds? Is it fun to ride with cars flying by only a few feet from you? Now I don't consider these things fun in the context of something that brings on a smile or laughter. However on completion there may be a sense of accomplishment, or a beautiful view, or some new insight in one's self which does bring on a smile of laughter. I have never defined doing physically strenuous things as "fun," or rewarding in the doing. The end result was usually relief that it was done and over with.
There are times when the views or insights become over shadowed by the volume of physical output. Those are the times when the question "What the hell am I doing this for?" would not be asked if it were "fun." The answer to that question is hard to find during those times. So it is left in the recesses of the mind to mull over. Then when it is time to go home there is a review of the whole trip which gives the answer. It was rewarding at so many levels and that is why I continue to ride in England and now Europe year after year. How could it ever become boring?
"What did you get, learn or experience on this trip?"
This is asked in connection to what was gotten, learned or experience on previous trips. Some of which was quite unexpected. The first trip allowed for a revival of my spirit and spiritual self back. The second trip revived my sence of a physical self back. This trip difficultly connected those two trips to give me the belief in self back. Each year all the decisions of what will be done next are made solely by me.