Monday, August 06, 2007

Anybody ever change your Life view?

This post is titled with a question and ends with one. If you want to skip the detail - I know you're busy - cut to the chase and read the last paragraph.

Not that any of you should listen to a newspaper guy who decided to ride a bike 477 miles in the humidity of Iowa cornfields...but unplugging for a couple weeks does your soul a world of wonder.

No phone...no internet...no ipod. I lived like a pig - although the end of day shower was delightful - talking and eating my way across Iowa as part of a "carnival on wheels". Estimates to the number of riders go as high as 20,000 and I must have talked to 1/2 of them. Working on my social skills at every opportunity :) Thanks to each of you who stopped by while the "Gone Fishing" sign was out and left comments. You know that's what keeps One Reader and one blogger going. Special thanks to you who talked about me :). Judging from at least one post - and my email box - it appears the Age of Conversation is bolting its way into people's minds. Way to go AoC community!

Plugging back in is another story altogether. Something about the lows that follow the highs, I'm sure. Plus this thing called "work". They say the first step is the toughest so consider this return post my first step back to reality. Life was so simple for a week...wake up...pack up camp...toss my bags on the truck...eat...have coffee...climb on the saddle...talk...climb off the saddle...talk while eating...climb on the saddle...eat while pedaling...talk some more...pedal some more...arrive in camp...have a beer...pitch my tent...talk some more...eat some more...rinse and repeat...for 7 glorious days. Here's the photo album if you wanna check it out! Tags and titles soon to follow.

I made the acquaintance - and gained the friendship - of a terrific person and fellow blogger/writer/journalkeeper. Joe from Chicago - just another one-legged bicyclist - literally saved my ass with some well timed advice - combine this and this for soothing relief :). Joe's journal is here...you need to register at greatestjournal.com to leave comments...but the most recent entry shows the determination it takes for this ride across the corn fields. His user info page tells the great story of his amputation. And this photo shows the famous dip in the Mississippi River 'tween Iowa and Illinois. Every once in a while I run across an individual who impacts my life more than they'll ever know. The impact is not particularly easy to verbalize. Definitely it becomes part of our shared humanity. It all started waiting in line for lasagna at the end of a 70 mile bike ride.

Can you write about a person who touched you in a similar way? Maybe you can't define the "how" - but its well worth trying.

10 comments:

Lewis Green said...

Bob,

Welcome back, my friend. In 1972, while enrolled as a student at Okaloosa-Walton Junior College, I studied philosophy under the able gaze of Dr. Robert Park.

In many ways, this man along with several other instructers saved my life. The story is too long for a comment, but the kindess, intelligence, frankness and wisdom of Dr. Part helped define who I am today. Unfortunately, the story had a sad and too-early ending, as Dr. Park collapsed dead of a brain tumor while teaching a class, soon after I moved on to the University of Florida.

Bob Glaza said...

Its great to be back, Lewis...takes a minute to get into the groove again :) - its hell getting old LOL

Thanks for sharing about Dr Park. Teachers have a way of affecting us, don't they? And philosophy profs are a real trip! I appreciate how you include frankness in your descriptor.

Stay cool!

Jackie Cameron said...

Good to have you back after your adventure Bob. About 4 years ago I met Francis - a young man of about 21 at that time. He and I were taking part in a leadership programme together at the time and we got on like a house on fire. He was roughly the age of my daughter - he told me about his Mum. Towards the end of the week he shared with me that he had been in prison in his teen years. I had grown to like and respect him - and that did not change with his revelation. Meeting him taught me so much about myself.

Bob Glaza said...

Wow, Jackie - you give me chills with your story. Makes me think of going beyond the preconceived notions we have about people. And how much better we all can become.

Its good to be back!

C. B. Whittemore said...

Welcome back, Bob! What an adventure you had. Thanks for sharing this glimpse with us. I look forward to hearing more.

Bob Glaza said...

Thanks C.B. - it was a real hoot of a trip! I'm working on angles for other posts about it. Some great examples of community in action - AND conversation!

bob said...

great story bob.

welcome back.

bob on!

Bob Glaza said...

thanks bob - always good to connect with another Bob...we could start a movement :)

Robyn McMaster, PhD said...

Bob, I've been waiting to welcome you back. You stepped out, stretched yourself and tried a whole new event and you are the richer for it. Fact is Bob as we age we need to do this to keep building new dendrites to keep our brain purring throughout life. ;-)

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