One more round of buses, trolleys and trains. Raining and still ailing from a head cold, I rode the bus with my bike on the rack, then caught the trolley over to the Amtrak station. There I caught the Pacific Surfliner to Los Angeles, where I would rest at the “Stay on Main” hostel. Then returning to Union Station to board the Coast Starlight heading north, heading home. At last.
Mixed feelings. The last two weeks have worn on my sense of purpose for this journey, with the add-on climb up to Joshua Tree and return to the beach a few days. Began to feel like I was wasting time, wandering. Avoiding responsibilities? Avoiding the lurching reality shift that inevitably awaits coming off such a long absence? Avoiding my need for community, my need to reconnect and reestablish ties back in Corvallis, back in Philomath, back with my family.
Or avoiding the bigger question: what am I going to do with my life? Somehow the tour with its daily goal and destination pushed off that question, provided a simple substitute answer – rather than compelling me to contemplate my current position and make difficult decisions about business, home, family, future. The danger of the “geographical escape” is that my troubles travel with me, and are waiting for me when I come home to roost.
I’m glad I have a couple more days before I get home. The long train ride – 27 hours – will give me time to move slowly back over the 1500 miles, back over the weeks of travel. Rewinding. Reconsidering. Processing. Finding an opening in my mind, in my heart. To be ready to come home. To be ready to see you all again.
Done with the beautiful scenery of the travelogue, I’ve included a few photos from the city scapes I’ve transited. The beauty of constructed environs.
Form, function, graceful curves, hard edges, artistic mosiacs. Fun Metro station on Hollywood, decorated with old movie reels! See if you can perceive the humanity behind the engineering, the love infused into concrete and glass and steel.