Dear diary…

It is now July 17, 2021. I had to step away from the page for a bit because I let other things get in the way of consistency. I have returned. It has been some time since I last put fingers to the keyboard, and I am happy to report that there have been quite a few memories created. Many of those involve windshield time, but that is ok.

As I sit here today to recall some of the places I have been and the things I have done, I do so in the shadow of a great feat. Just last night I put together a tentative itinerary for the rest of 2021. I have a good idea of where I will be most days, and many of those days include my truck! HA! I will have no more than 23 remaining states to check off the list when the end of the year arrives. There is going to be some serious drive time, but that comes with the territory. I marveled at the difference from the Northeast to the western states. As I chase the setting sun, the two to three hour increments I wanted to drive cease to get me far enough in my travel to be worth it. I will eventually face five to eight hour days, and much more of a grind. That is ok, though, because the stories must be told.

I have managed to chat with countless new friends over the course of my time away from writing, and I have also seen some beautiful places. I went to the eastern-most point in the continental US, at West Quoddy Lighthouse, where I gazed out over the ocean and saw crashing waves against a rocky shoreline. I also experienced a post-tropical depression cyclone, and the remnants of Elsa dropped a LOT of rain on a bike ride through Acadia. That was wet, and cold, but a stand out memory nonetheless. My short term future looks decent. I have been in the Portland, ME area for a couple days, and have a couple more in front of me. I have encountered some great people here, and have managed to hear some great stories. As fate would have it, the rink I am staying at was hosting a camp, and when I walked in the other day, I was informed that Bill Beaney was helping coach it. I was able to shake his hand, and meet one of the men who I had hosted on the podcast in late December. It was a very nice moment.

Next up for me is a trip to Northern Maine. If you know, you know. I am heading to the border of Canada, and into a piece of the state that is a whole different world, and moves at a much slower pace. It should be a good time to reset and reload before things get crazy again. There is an aspect of fear in me. I look ahead to what I have mapped out, and I see that where I am, and what I am doing now, it is only a warm up. Even though I am coming up on nine months on the road, I have been lucky to have places to stay, and people I know along the way that have put me up on couches and beds. From Fort Kent, things are going to get crazy. That includes two trips back to Steamboat, and miles and miles put on the truck. The stories are there, I will find them, and share, but I feel at times like a leaf in the air, thrust around, everywhere.

I am done rhyming for now, and I hope to come back to you soon, as I try to pick up the more regular writing shift I told myself I would. Between now and then, be well.

In hockey,