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A new perspective:
Life after the OBX
October 4th of the first year

Lucas and Francis, 23 and 27 respectively, had a completely different take on bicycle adventuring than my own. We parted earlier today as they wanted to keep exploring the beaches while I was happier following my maps and the country side. It was great to have the company and friendship in a place of strangers and I learned a great deal from them.

First and foremost, the planet and its people are your greatest treasures. They have encountered great hospitality from strangers because they're happy to strike up conversations with random folk instead of biking from dawn to dusk like I have been. And by some bizarre happening yesterday, Lucas found an unopened stick of pepperoni laying in the grass. Who the f*** finds pepperoni laying around outside... unopened?? Anything cooked ends up being good for you. I think they had the capacity to bum a full pack of cigarettes daily if they couldn't find enough laying on the ground, and I learned that "now is always a good time for a beer". They definitely lived on a more efficient budget than my own... much more if it weren't for the beer. I can recall eating uncooked packs of Ramen noodles as well as digging in the peanut butter jar with a bagel.

Last night was the third night in a row sleeping directly on the beach and watching the sunset on the ocean. This time it was three full packs of mac and cheese, a slightly classy dinner for the three of us. We managed to find scattered firewood throughout the beach and started a nice bonfire to put the capstone on this powwow. A bonfire can do nothing else but take me back to the countless hours I spent staring into the weekend blazes in college, and it's always a perfect hypnosis. We had the beach completely to ourselves, the moon, stars, the sound of waves crashing and not a single care in the world. I could post all the photos in the world, my voice recordings, type until my fingers bleed... but there is no way I could ever portray what it was to be there that night... in the midst of it all.

As I stared into the fire, I found a kind of sadness knowing that I was living a moment in my life with a very short lifespan. Tomorrow has already come, and the beach, my comrades, the ocean and the adventure has taken a lonely route. Somehow I wanted this but I can't quite explain why. So, my voice recorder is once again my best friend, I can hear myself swallow, feel the resistance of the wind and the slow torture of every pain in between. Night will come soon and it will be back to the internal dialog of both Chuck and Charlie.

Though, maybe the story of the t-shirt and $26 is only the beginning...

We woke up on the beach with 44 minutes to pack our gear, push our bikes through the sand and then bike 4 miles to get to the ferry. We made it with 2 minutes to spare and proceeded to overhaul our "horses" once onboard. I seriously hate the sand on my bike... it's a large part of why I cycled back into the country by myself. The captain of the boat greeted us as we boarded and immediately said, "You don't walk into your house covered in sand, why would you walk on my boat like that??". I didn't answer, but I found it peculiar that he'll allow dirty cars and trucks on his deck but not sandy shoes. Seconds later he was hosing us down.

The maps said this gas station was in service... I happen to disagree. I wanted to cook our pancakes inside so we could get out of the sun, but Francis didn't like the idea of eating next to cockroaches... pfft.

1. We're going to need some more shampoo.
2. An excellent mosquito shield.
3. It was a full moon this night.
4. I thought Snuffleupagus had a trunk...?

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Semi-retire and do more of what you love.

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The best of
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  2. Oh the Places You'll Go
  3. The Third and Final Leg
  4. What is truly important?
  5. Oh those happy slaves
  6. The Beard learns to Whistle
  7. Dreams within Dreams
  8. The Imagination runs Wild
  9. I've Crossed Over
  10. Heaven, Hell and everything in between

About the author:

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My name is Charles Tronolone and I'm attempting something a bit unconventional; I'm trying to make a living by writing while on a perpetual bicycle tour. How I got to this point is a story in itself, but suffice to say that I refuse to be just another cog in the machine. There's too much important work to be done and too many eyes to open for us to be content with personal goals or riches. In late 2006, I managed to escape the machine, and now I'm setting off to help bring it down.

Whether or not this website proves to generate the revenue required to keep me on the road remains to be seen. I understand that the odds are heavily against me and that this means of income requires incredible amounts of time I simply won't have. However, it's the content that is going to accomplish what actually matters in the end. Should I fail financially, there's pride in knowing that I have already succeeded in purpose -- I have helped to liberate my peers to spread truth and meaning into their own lives.

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