Sunday, 18 September 2011


I suppose perception is different for everyone. You may think that something is great while another may feel exactly the opposite.

I repeatedly feel that I have been on the road cycling for years. That some how I was a different age when I started. Yet some friends back home tell me in email that the time has passed so quickly. That they can't quite believe I'll be home soon.

Neither can I, sadly.

Email is something which has become the accepted way of communication now. Gone are the days of the written letter. For a time I was writing the "old way" to my friend Ewan in Australia and I loved getting his letter in return. It's lapsed a bit but I think I'll start that up again. Emails often tend to get misread and people's perception of what you are trying to say gets lost in translation sometimes. To me a written letter is never misunderstood and it's a joy to see the persons handwriting.

Sometimes my perception lets me down. I'll often be shopping in a small grocery store or a large supermarket for my evening meal, confident that I am ravenously hungry and buy way too much meat, vegetables or fruit. Maybe the occasional donut too.

One of my favourite fruits that I enjoy as part of my diet are peaches. It's a hit or a miss sometimes with peaches. I get to the display and give it the ubiquitous squeezy squeezy test, perceiving that this one not that one will be most juicy. More than half the time I'm wrong, even though I feel I have built up a good frame of reference over the months.

My perception is spot on sometimes though, especially when it comes to the friendliness of the American people. Not once have I met anyone that has been anything but kind and generous. Well, maybe the odd checkout person or diner waitress. And I do mean quite literally, "odd".

Speaking of odd people, Pauline and I have had perceived many things differently as we have gone along. Sometimes it may be what we feel about a small town we are in, or what certain scenery reminds us of.

But one perception we both share is that this is a wonderful experience cycling across America.

Sadly it's almost at an end. And that's not just my perception.

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