A cross country bus trip is not without its odd occurrences though... For brevity's sake, I will only recount incidences of police being involved and leave out all of the other strange stuff:
Saturday 9pm Boise, ID An extremely drunk passenger had repeatedly tried to open the emergency escape windows. He is arrested and led off by the police.
Sunday 8:10am Ogden, UT A man misses the bus when it stops at the station. He catches up with the bus on a freeway overpass, drives in front and blocks the bus's lane. After several minutes of standing outside demanding to be let on the bus, the police arrive and cuff him.
Sunday 11:45am Evanston, WY Two state police SUVs are awaiting the bus at the next scheduled stop. All passengers are ordered to exit the bus. The police search the bus with dogs for drugs possibly left by a passenger that was arrested the night before.
Sunday 8pm Denver, CO A guy yells across the bus terminal, "Hey! That's not your f**king bag!" The target of his outburst is an extremely drunk man urinating directly onto the first man's luggage which sits out in the middle of the terminal. The urinater is put in an armlock by security, taken away and arrested.
Monday 2am Colby, KS A woman starts verbally abusing the bus driver because she wants to smoke another cigarette before the bus leaves. The police are called and they escort her off of the bus with her two children. Some other passengers are irate over her treatment, however it was observed that the woman had loudly told her kids earlier, "I can't wait til I get you two home so I can go out and get drunk."
Despite these disruptions, I still made it back to State College safely and surprisingly on schedule. After only approximately 12 hours, I started getting edgy. After a day, I knew that I needed to give myself a new all encompassing goal to focus on and work towards. I made the mistake of watching Ride the Divide, a documentary about the Tour Divide mountain bike race. The race entails riding approximately 2,750 miles along the Continental Divide from Banff, AB to the Mexican border in New Mexico. The route follows Adventure Cycling's Great Divide Mountain Bike Route. The current course record is something like 15 days which works out to about a 180 mile per day average. During my cross country ride this summer, I had paralleled the route on pavement for over half of it's length and I had often thought about riding the Divide.
I decided to (try and) race it next year.
Do I know what I'm in for? No. Am I in shape for it? No. Do I have the gear for it? Nah. Is this going to completely destroy me? Yep. Am I looking forward to the biggest challenge ever? Yes. Do I expect to place on the podium? No. Am I going to try and have fun with it? Certainly.
I am calling my effort Not So Great Divide 2013. The route is great mind you. It's my style of riding it that will probably be "not so great". But that's the fun of it. Picking a seemingly impossible challenge and working towards it and hopefully making it look a little less impossible. I will strive to document the process of starting from scratch, getting my equipment together, detailing the planning and logistics and training harder than I ever have before. Actually I don't train for much so this will be a new experience too...
So join me for the fun and games. It's gonna be a long, bumpy ride.