Left New Orleans on Friday morning, about 10:30. Most often on the night before launch day I dance with the idea that I could leave at sunrise. Enticed by the thrill of setting out with the sun, I consider all the traveling I could get done if I leave at dawn. I set my alarm with righteous intention but, then, turn it off. As I put my head to the pillow I am usually reminded of how nice it is to begin my journey well rested, handsomely fed and clear of mind.
This time on launch morning, even though I let myself sleep in, and took the time to eat right, and double-checked my packing and site clean-up, I am still feeling left of center. Energy low and wishing I had another day in town, but looking forward to travel, I take off riding on the excitement of seeing family and friends.
On the first day’s travel I push hard to get north of St. Louis. The second day didn’t get me an hour out before I just couldn’t go any further. I was exhausted. I spent that day and subsequent night in the lovely burb of Wentzville, Mo. I found a good place to eat, and nap, with nice people. Then in the morning I take off for my next stop, a couch surf in Des Moines, with the glimmer of an idea that maybe I’m a little more wore out than I realize.
Worn out indeed. With each full nights’ sleep, I realize now how little good rest I’d been getting over the winter season. I’d come to New Orleans tired from a long, hard session of farm work. Energy stores spent from living and working in an unusually cold spring, short summer, and chilly fall. In the Big Easy, I was hoping on a gentle season of southern urban farming. Rejuvenation in a warm, soft winter like the one I’d had there two years ago.
Well, not this time. What a harsh winter this has been for everyone. I’m limping into port with sails torn and planks moaning.
Let’s see what I can do with a couple months in a Midwestern spring.