A Walk to San Diego. Day 13

January 31, 2012

Solana Beach. Rest Day. Cumulative: 135 miles

Day 13

10:00 am: Wake up. Last night, I asked my host if I could spend an extra day at Solana Beach and he obliged. In the morning, he tells me I can take his bicycle to meet him for lunch at his office. So I try to. But he’s at least 6’2″, and I don’t want to mess around with his seat adjustment. I think bike seats are like car driver seats. People are unusually frustrated when they are altered. After a few awkward attempts, I maneuver myself onto the seat to peddle. When I do, I can’t stabilize myself and crash into a fence. I am three feet away from the driveway and on the side of the road.

People will always ask me why I didn’t choose to cycle across the country, and they never seem to take, “I’m just not a cyclist” as an answer. I like walking. Well I did. Until this started. But outside of these upcoming months, I’m someone that enjoys walking. So when people ask me why I don’t cycle (or run or rollerblade or horseback or whatever) instead, I really don’t know what else to say but, “That’ just not me.” And even though I know all those modes of transportation are faster, and relatively easier, I know I wouldn’t be able to sustain a trip of this length doing something everyday I didn’t want to do. So I walk (not cycle, run, rollerblade, or whatever) and I don’t know if I’ll finish, but this is the only way I have a shot.

11:30: I see my host at his office. He asks me why I didn’t bring the bicycle. We go to his local spot for Mexican food. I tell him I like carnitas. He tells me the carne asada is much better. I tell him I like carnitas. He tells me the carne asada is really much better. I order a carne asada burrito and a carnitas street taco just to be sure. He is right. The carne asada is afuera de este mundo. And the carnitas is asi asi.

12:30 pm: I head back and look at routes to San Diego. Once you enter the city of La Jolla there are many different options to get from one street to the next. Some that are certainly better, some that are certainly worse. And Google Maps does not have the capability to distinguish between better walking roads like it does for cycling roads. One road could have a huge sidewalk, plenty of places to fill up water, and a fan club of people cheering my name the entire way, and if it even .1 miles longer than a road with no sidewalk, no shoulder, and no adoring fans, Google Maps will opt for the one with shorter distance. I don’t think it matters that much, so I decide I’ll just follow whatever path the maps app chooses.

3:00: I climb up the orange tree in the backyard and make orange juice with the juicer in the cupboard.

5:30: Host gets home and tells me he and his neighbors are going to The Jayhawks concert. I tell him I’ve never heard of the band. He says I’d probably recognize this one song “Blue,” and I might be able to scalp a ticket if we go early. I tell him I’ll mull it over. I don’t tell him this, but I want to go. I just don’t want to spend $20 on this. At this point, it’s too early to tell if it’s in the budget, and I don’t want to think back and regret spending money on something I wasn’t that interested in. We go to his neighbors and have some drinks. We chat about Boston, walking, and concerts. By the second gin and tonic, they’re asking me if I’m going to come or not. I’m still not sure, but I’m having a good time with them, and the other alternative is to just go back and look at more maps.

6:00 Somewhere in the last sip, I get some clarity. I’ve always said I feel like I’d be happy with my life if my income was enough so that money was not the single most determining factor in my decision-making. And statistics show the same thing. That there is a correlation between money and happiness, but up to a point. A point that is much lower than people expect. So I decide I need to go to this concert. I decide to go because I need to change my current intuitive response to financial decisions. I need to go to because the only reason I don’t want to go is because of the money. For the sake of this trip, I need to actively take this step to not worry. Not now. Not this soon.

7:00: We get to the venue and one of his friends has a ticket ready for me to buy. The opening act has one more song to play. Everyone is in good spirits. I like the band and the music. Sort of Wilco-esque. I am happy. I am here.