Honestly it was an absolutely terrible start. I was completely unprepared for the rainy weather. It really tested my resolve and desire for this entire trip. But hey, that's what it's all about right? I can't say that I want to detach myself from society for three months and expect things to be hunky dory all the time. Just when I thought things couldn't have been more terrible we arrived at the state park we met a fellow cyclist named Ed. Ed turned out to be an amazing individual. Since 1997 he's put over 80,000 miles on his bike. He told me that he simply just picked up and went one day and hasn't looked back. He had a lot of emotional baggage from his days in the navy which lead to a depressed alcoholic lifestyle. He was at his lowest when a couple of European touring riders stayed at his house a few days and introduced him to cycling and the Christian faith. He said that a short time later he bought a bike and he just started riding. Riding and his faith are what keeps him sane. When we met him he was traveling north on the end of a seven month ride from Costa Rica... just gnarly. Not only did he tell an amazing story about his life he pointed out some obvious flaws with the set up of my bike, fixed my bike, gave me a lock and sold me his tent. I should mention that I started the trip with just a bivvy sack... Big mistake. The interesting thing is, is that when we met Ed he had experienced some severe bike issues and the repairs left him nearly broke. I being a dangerously inexperienced traveler needed a good water proof tent. So we made the tent/cash swap. Which worked out splendidly for the both of us. I now have a dry place to sleep and he has enough money to last him till he gets his government pay check for the month. It seemed like our meeting was intentionally designed.
Anyway we said our goodbyes to Ed and this second day has been amazing. The sun has been shining and I'm fortunate to write this from a great little cafe in Carpinteria called LumaCafe. The have a great in house bakery and some decent coffee. My americano wasn't amazing but it's not terrible either. Good job guys. As we let our things dry in the sun it's good to get a well made meal inside of us. Oh yea. It's also my dad's birthday. It's great to spend the day riding with him. Time to get a few more miles in.