Thoughts on Guam from a (relatively) chilly place
I've just finished another beautiful day of cross country skiing near Mt Hood. It's incredibly scenic up there, but it's a long way from the clear waters and sandy beaches of Guam and Saipan. I must admit - I miss the islands.
Mt. Hood on December 21, 2010
Micronesia is a special place. The remoteness of location makes it less of a tourist draw and allows the beauty of the local culture to thrive. I think about Guam, and what keeps coming back to me is how the people I met were among the most welcoming and generous I had ever seen. I'm still amazed by how we were treated and with what genuine interest everyone took in our journey. Everyone wanted to make us feel like we were always part of the family. Leaving bordered on painful.
As for the cycling, it was excellent. In hindsight, the slippery roads were not so bad, and I would rather risk those than the icy ones we currently have here. The terrain was stunning and the drivers generally courteous and friendly. One guy passed us twice, each time flashing a shaka. On every ride bar one it rained a bit, sometimes heavily, but it didn't seem to matter very much. It is so warm that the rain almost comes as a relief. The local riders seem to like it, actually. I'll take warm rain over the cold stuff we have here any day.
Now that some time has passed, I have had a chance to think about the race and all that surrounded it. I didn't finish as well as I had hoped, but there are lots of things in races one can't control and I'm happy with how it turned out. I was able to show up in top condition. I made some incredible friends and met some awesome people. I had amazing support from my wife Stacey and friends Monessa, Karly, and Rosie. Invaluable material support came from Russell Cree, my good friend Joseph, and from Easton Cycling. Without any of these folks, things would have been very different.
As we settle into what looks to be yet another deep freeze here, I find myself dreaming of the Islands and the warm rain. I'm even thinking about Guam's premier cycling event in February. Who's coming with me?