After working in hospitals for 4+ decades, I became a bit jaded. Not much knocked me off my center. Particularly after working burn and trauma for about 12+ years. What has this to do with anything connected to cycling? Adam Baker. Plus I used bicycling and running to help clear my mind from the day to day situations that I and colleagues dealt with. Like the police, firefighters, paramedics, etc., sometimes you have to work in the field to appreciate the humor within the ranks.
Adam came through Silver City on his way along the Adventure Cycling Association's Southern Tier Route. He's looking at his options right now and trying to make a decision, or decisions, about where he wants to go next and what he might want to do. Jesus, I'm retired and I'm still asking myself those same questions!
Some of his thinking involves medical school. That brought forth stories from me about my time working in the medical field. We laughed and made fun of docs, medical students, nurses, and commented on how difficult their jobs were/are. The little caricature above is actually more true than funny to anyone who has worked around medical students, residents, first year residents, etc., who do the scut work.
No one, not even Adam, really knows what s/he will end up doing for work in life. That's part of what Adam's journey is about. Trying to get a picture, a handle, something that might point him in the direction he's looking for. Funny thing is, lots of times people end up working doing things they never dreamed of.
So, Adam is headed to New Orleans to see his brother, sister-in-law, and a nephew he's never met. When he's done there, he's heading to Baltimore. From there, who knows? Maybe he'll head back to Los Angeles, CA, where he's lived for the past 5yrs. We wish him well. We thoroughly enjoyed having Adam stay at our house for a night. He was congenial, friendly, and a good conversationalist....and funny. I'm sure, like most touring cyclists, he has a time frame dictating when he needs to be somewhere and how long he can stay on the road. In his short time going through our neck of the woods, he had the opportunity to meet up with one of the strange agents that live here. That was a funny story. Anyways, he got a ride from the top of Mule Creek Pass to Silver City so he made it to our house the night we were expecting him. The guy who gave him the ride was the character I mentioned previously. So, he had a long ride and a strange conversation going with this guy. On arrival in Silver City, Adam headed to the Motel 6 to pick up a new phone that he had shipped there. His had died. Adam called me from the Motel 6 and I gave him directions to our house. In no time, we were seated at our kitchen couner having a beer.
The next morning, after breakfast, Adam headed out on the route I suggested to bypass the Silver Fire that was burning in the Black Range. Rt. 152 was open, but I recommended he take Rt. 180 to Deming, then head over to Hatch, NM, via Rt. 26. One hundred miles, but mostly flat or downhill. Really. I contacted him when I thought he would be in Las Cruces, NM, and he said the ride went well. Now, he's heading across Texas. A long ride going across Texas. Probably 10 days at the least, more likely about 12 days, not counting any rest days.
Adam would make a good doc. He's got the qualities that would make him a worthwhile addition to the medical field. He's human. Yesterday, I got an email from Adam letting me know that he'd had a rough day riding and was recovering at a motel. One of the things about bicycle touring, in particular, is that it gives a rider a chance to see if they like how they deal with adversity, or good fortune, and think about whether they want to change up how they are as a human being. For most people, it takes a big event to create change. With bicycle touring, everyday is an opportunity to look at yourself and see what you think.
A few videos...one had the Donald Duck voice again, so I deleted it. So tired of that happening! But here are some that have regular voices...
Now, a tune to exit with...Wynton Marsalis doing his jazz thing. Don't know the name of the tune, but this guy is great. So, Adam, go see this guy if he's playing anywhere in NOLA.