Howdy Ho Good People! Hope this update finds everyone well and excited to dig into loads of food and family for the holidays. Last update came from Ville, my good man stepped in to tell you about his adventures with Mango, my Dad, circling around through Utah on a quest to see as many National Parks, debauchery in Vegas and loads of male bonding time packed into two weeks. It has been a Bucket List for my Dad and I am really grateful that Ville was able to go and that they like each other enough to spend two weeks together. If you missed that post, scroll down the page, you will find it. And so, here is where I was when they were off playing, I was playing Best Auntie by watching our niece, Skylar, and nephew, Braydon, for over a week while my sister and her husband went to Mexico. Ville and I are travelers, and we miss out on a lot of precious family and friend time. So I was really excited I was offered the job and had absolutely the best time doing it. Here is a few pics from my week:
I like to think of myself as the "fun" Auntie, probably because I get really excited taking Braydon to the local climbing gym by their house. He is obsessed with Spiderman and Tarzan and everything a four-year-old is usually into and he is a natural! The other dude in the pics is Jordan, my brother, who is a crazy good climber and also a major inspiration to Braydon. I took him downtown Portland, Oregon for a day to climb with Jordan on the big walls and you can see how fearless he was climbing all the way to the top and even bounced himself back down like a boss without us even showing him. He will be the next adventurer for sure, sorry Lisa and Sean, but it's true.
We also grocery shopped with a giant car. For those of you with kids, you know how fun this is. I had forgotten that I made a promise the grocery run before that they could have the big car the next time, and then had to pony up some follow through the next run. As you can see, Skylar drove, and Braydon checked us out. A great success. Although exhausting, I loved every single minute and can't wait to get back for more! After my week was up, I got a ride back to Bend from a friend, Nate, where I met up with Ville back from his Two Bros Adventure and we crammed in catch-up, saw a few friends, some work and back to Portland for my cousin, Sara, to fly in for her 40th Birthday Celebration.
My cousin Sara, my sister Lisa and I fabulous time together in Portland - my brother Jordan gave us his apartment for four days so we could party, his girlfriend, Ami, took him in and gave us supplies and my parents and Ville came up to help watch the kids - and the ladies went wild. You will notice we made Sara a cake decorated in penises, because I mean, what forty year old woman doesn't want a penis cake? We hiked up to the Pittock Mansion, got pedicures, walked through haunted cemeteries, hit up happy hours, and stuff. On Saturday, my other cousin , Carrie, drove down from Washington with her son Cade to join in the fun. A great time had by all! And Ville, you can see, is an excellent Uncle. And after Sara flew home to Cali, Carrie left, my parents drove back to Bend, Ville and I jumped on a plane and flew to...Buenos Aires, Argentina!
And here is why, I AM FINALLY WRITING THE BOOK!!! For those of us that followed our two year bicycle journey of the Americas and those who have come to one or many of our presentations, knows it has been a goal to finish. While biking recently through Eastern Europe, I was very inspired to get the book done. Ville had a great idea, that if I wanted to be able to actually find the time to write, I would need to leave the distractions of home to do so. Best idea so far, because write, write, write, see some sights, and write some more is all I've been up to the last month. And I am making great progress, almost six chapters deep. And I promise everyone in wait, the book is coming...
Ville, is here making a full documentary of the Ride. He made two short films, for the Bend Bike Film Festival and also for the presentations we have done, mostly voluntary, in and around Bend. But we can't always be there to tell and retell the story, and so he is building a full film, so hang tight, that will be out soon as well!
As for our side adventures, here is a little look at what we have been up to. Ville and I both played football/soccer growing up and are big fans of the sport. Buenos Aires produces lots of world-class players and has numerious stadiums to see some thrilling games. A bucket list for us, we made it to a Boca Juniors Game! We also went to a Argentina Juniors Game. Big fans of both. We have watched horse races, horse polo, concerts, eaten lots of empanadas and spent some fun time with friends, Felix and Babun. They hosted us in the city right after our ride ended and are great resources for all the cool stuff to do in BA. We watched the parties when the new president of Argentina was sworn into office this last week: Alberto Fernandez. We hope the best for the country moving forwards. And Ville and I have also become excellent photographers assistants (Felix is a photographer and has pulled us in to help out on some fun shoots). It's been a blast. A LOT of work (Book and Film), but a good time. SOOOOOoooo we have a month left. I will keep you posted. Please do check back. I recommend, if you have not already, sign up for the Newsletter. I will be writing everyone once the Book and Film are ready.
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K.G. & Ville
In New Zealand on bikes.
“Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside in a cloud of smoke, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming "Wow! What a Ride!” - Hunter S. Thompson