After the motorbike adventure through Paraguay, Bolivia, Chile, Peru and Ecuador we were both fed up with sitting on a motorbike. I wanted to travel by kickbike and Geo wanted to be in the Appalachians. We thought combining the two would be nice. Never done kickbiking before, not being familiar with it and not having a good plan, we set off in Atlanta, USA where we first had to buy all our gear.
With the winter at the doorstep we set off trying to kick through the Appalachian region. Rain and cold pushed us very soon in a small tent, seeking shelter from pouring coldness. Where we both have been through hardships and unpleasantness it seems harder when one is not fully doused long enough to such adventure. We decide to do the worst of all things a traveler in the USA can do: we went by Greyhound bus to Florida. Simply because we wanted sunshine and more easy surface to kick on.
Once in Jacksonville we kicked to Gainesville, over routes not memorable. Boring scenery and lack of character rules. It is here that we come to an abrupt standstill. My ankles are to blame. The lingering bolts and pangs are now not only palpable but visible: my ankles are swollen. I might suffer tendonitis. Our kickbike adventure seems over, I have to sit and sit and sit some more. I sit for a full 4 weeks. My legs are in a line above my heart. My ankles are covered in a wet cloth and I try not to move.
Well, try not moving when you are the active type. Soon I am hunting frogs and lizards, trying to have them pose in front of my lens. I succeed. I am able to come up with the most pretty lizard and frog portraits. Although I am not doing much, I am as busy as can be. Besides cooking, I keep changing the position of my tent, I read and embroider and I search for new species of lizards. They seem to be everywhere, building nests near where I sit. Falling out of the trees from above me. Watching a very green species I notice a new pattern for embroidering. His eye!
Drawing a simplified lizard eye, my husband tells me it looks much like the all-seeing-eye. That has a negative taste to me so I change my simplified lizard eye drawing to… another simplified lizard eye.
Not wanting to embroider another stitch which has to be counted, I choose for a simple straight stitch. And I alternate the direction in each square the eye is set in. Free style. Simple. I want it quick (not that it turned out quick).
Meanwhile Corona has entered the stage. Geo and I are comfortably enough hiding in the woods, just behind the crazily expensive Publix supermarket. We are positioned at a not yet bulldozed down part of a health park. In Florida that means hospital buildings one after another, for any imaginable mind disorder. A close eye is kept on us while Geo washes himself or I launder underwear at a basin at the health park.
We are surrounded by a life standard that seems only for the wealthier ones. Whether their financial security is derived from a commercial institution or whether the fancy facade is to keep up their status. A lot seems to be about ego and being homeless is an act that may be fined. Geo and I live out a homeless live for a month in the woods. We hope we will not be seen by anyone.
From Gainesville we move to Jacksonville. We stay in someone’s backyard, a so called campground with one stinking Dixie toilet and plenty of room to embroider. I finish the lizard eye here and once again back in Europe I find discarded clothes from Geo his dad with which I create the actual slip-in pouch.
I prefer to own little. To buy only when absolutely necessary. Now, being more home-bound instead of a self-pronounced nomadic sort of cyclist, I still buy little and I certainly will not buy fabric to make a pouch. I want the pouch I make to be recycled and not a part of consumerism society (it helps that I have a huge pile of hemp and silk cotton from Nepal). Though I do understand that with someone buying this pouch he or she will gather more (and I less).
See the pouch I make as an art form, it is certainly most useful but also it adds beauty to the… simplified lizard, eye.
The full USA posts are to be found on the CyclingCindy website.
USA 1 From Georgia to Florida
USA 2 Not kickbiking because of inflammations of both tendons
USA 3 Corona virus thus no more kickbiking