Wednesday, December 26, 2012

October 15, 2012 - Jon Manuell

When I read this to you all it will be right before our last van ride together because today our destination is Macomb, IL. Today we fill the van for the last time for our last long journey together and even though we will all be busy typing away and working on our critiques and trip plans, I want everyone to think about all the memories and fun we’ve had in this van that’s become a second home. From our first ride in Walmart back in August we’ve formed, stormed, normed, and performed in this van and today we unofficially start adjourning by saying goodbye to our traveling white home. Remember when Jeff first showed us the “organization” of the trailer? We even took pictures to try and remember where everything belonged. Now I could probably find something in that trailer easier than I could in my own room.
Tonight is also our last night of the front country and camping. For the rest of our expedition, camping is no longer “in-tents”. Over this next week and a half I will definitely miss being able to say goodnight to everyone and hearing “Hey…Hey….Hey” from a nearby tent accompanied by the occasional flash of a fuji film. Truthfully, I am excited to wake up warm tomorrow but I will miss every other aspect of sleeping outdoors. Last night I watched the moon travel the sky through our tent . As I watched its dance it was joined by a chorus of coyote howls. In Canada we fell asleep to loons, wolves, and what we thought were bears. Before this trip I would have jumped at rustling sounds nearby me but now I can’t sleep without them and the occasional howl of a wild animal. I will also miss the stars and the many nights I slept with my contacts in even though I shouldn’t just so I could star gaze deep into the night.
It’s been amazing sleeping on the beaches, slinging my hammock in the Sierras, and waking up to frost in Colorado. Looks like I’m going to need to find someone crazy enough to do some winter camping with me soon because I’m not ready to say goodbye.

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