Three years ago, I set out on a bicycle trip from Brownsville, Texas to Fort Kent, Maine. After completing the first part, from Brownsville to my home in Tennessee, I found that my sister was in a stage of cancer much more advanced than when I had left so discontinued the trip to be with her and family. This summer, I completed part 2 of the trip. This post summarizes the two parts. Later ones will focus on this summer’s trip to the tip of Maine.
See Tim’s Bike Trip (blogspot.com) for a report on my coast-to-coast trip five years ago.
Part 1: Brownsville, TX to Murfreesboro, TN
Approximate Length: 1,2000 miles in 12 days (no rest days)
Time: Last two weeks of May, 2015
Getting to the starting point: I boxed my bike with the help of Youtube videos and a carton taken from the bin of our local bike store MOAB with their permission, took a Greyhound Bus to Brownsville, and reassembled the bike in Greyhound’s quiet, protected outside waiting area.
Part 2: Murfreesboro to Fort Kent, Main
Approximate Length: 1,800 miles in 23 days, including 3 rest days
Time: May 27—June 18
Highlights: I will mention a few here, each being the potential topic of later posts.
Getting back home: Dear cousin Marg had been in central Maine and, ready to return to her place in Pennsylvania, agreed to go a couple hundred miles out of her way to pick me up in Fort Kent and take me with her. I then rented a car from her place to my home. The price of the rental dropped from $650 to $150 when I changed the final destination to the airport 25 miles from home rather than the local agency in Murfreesboro.
This morning, the blueberry harvest was plentiful but the workers were few. Indeed I alone was picking them, putting most in a bowl but eating some. Their good taste encouraged me to question a common interpretation of the ancient saying about harvest and workers that had come to mind. I was taught that the harvest was the “unsaved” and the workers were missionaries. I believe there were banners to this effect in my college years and workers were few since people resisted the altar calls during “special meetings” in the chapel, favoring instead meetings in off-campus bars.
But the harvest is good! As the psalmist says about the earth yielding a harvest, “Yahweh gives what is good!” Maybe Jesus was encouraging the disciples to go out and harvest not for the sake of “the lost” but for the sake of themselves. Get up and go to “the harassed and helpless” rather than sitting in the synagogue or clinging to my robe and realize that in interacting with those outside your religious circle you will find goodness!
Trails we follow,