Guest Blogger - Becca Raney
It’s Monday November 11 and Devon, Blake & Jeff are pedaling the last miles of the bike powered surf adventure down the West Coast right now!
I am writing this from our home on Bainbridge Island just as I am about to leave to get the next boat to Seattle to meet Madrona. Madrona stayed in Ballard last night with Blake’s wife Chanda and her cousins Taylor, Landen & Alder so I could pull off my last marathon day before leaving for San Diego.
Devon and Jeff have been keeping some trip stats that I am sure we’ll get to hear about soon but I have a few of my own to share.
70 trip days:
38 nights at home with Madrona
1 night at home alone (only 1! After the first weekend Madrona declared she would be postponing sleep overs until Dad came home. I was super thankful for this.)
5000 miles added to the odometer
95 Instagram Posts
40 Blog Posts
5 hamburgers (I’ve only included this to compare notes with the trip tally)
countless Taylor Swift dance parties (fastest way to fill the room when Devon’s gone)
Trying to sum up my thoughts about this adventure proves to be no easy task. I have never been too quick with words. I like to take my time, reflect and then in the end say just a little. This trip has been a big deal in my world. It has been time apart from Devon, I could have told you the first week in I’m not a fan of the time apart. It has given me a glimpse at what life is like logistically for a single parent. BUSY! I don’t know how many times I chanted to myself “You got this, you can do it.” It challenged me, Devon talks a lot on the phone and frequently keeps people updated so his absence meant that I had to get on the phone and keep people updated. It worked and I felt super connected. It even connected me in a greater way with our community here on BI.
Everyday I was a part of this trip one way or another. The behind the scenes work was rewarding and necessary but being with Devon and crew along the way was really incredible. Everyone was so content. I look at this picture of Madrona, we are at Jalama...it’s a mile & a half walk down to Tarantulas and she may have complained a bit about the trek but here she is, completely content. This was the third surf session of our stay at Jalama and while I was attempting to capture a surf shot of Devon (Jeff entrusted me with his camera for a few surf sessions) I also watched Madrona take it all in. She existed in her own big world, jumping, posing, chasing birds and then just sitting and watching her Dad surf. It was right where she wanted to be. And then there is Devon, surfing, with his ladies watching...truly no place he would rather be. Sometimes I forget....you know that he’s blind. I sat there that day and watched him surf. Madrona and I had just driven down from Washington. On Saturday we drove from Corvallis, OR to Santa Cruz, 600 miles, 11 hours...it felt like a long day but all I kept thinking was he biked here and he did it because he wanted to.
70 days later and it really could not have been a better trip. Scott lost his dog, that part definitely could have been better. But then there was Jeff. Had Jeff not craved an interest to be a part of this adventure that may have posed to be a bigger hurdle but they readjusted, consolidated there stuff and pedaled on. I swooped in behind and picked up Jeff’s bike and some gear that wouldn’t fit and 3 days later we were back on track in Pacific City. They pedaled straight through the heaviest fall storm the Oregon Coast has seen in 100 years. 13 people participated in cycling this journey, 7 Captains, Devon & Jeff, Madrona & Cannon, Verna Herron and Dave Hendrickson. Not one person got sick, injured or defeated. That’s incredible.
Tomorrow we fly to San Diego to celebrate! Madrona and I are eager again to see Devon and feel super energized knowing we’ll be coming home this time all three of us. So I guess one could say we’ve come to the end because the pedaling is done but I don’t feel that way at all.