I woke up suddenly, thirsty and ready. I went for my gallon and realized that in my tired stupor I must’v tossed it down on a rock or some other dessert bull, because the cap was missing and it was pretty much bone dry. I got up and started getting mentally prepared to climb the next mountain I saw ahead of me, which started about a mile ahead.
Now, I am not sure how to describe the energy that arises in times of serious, vitality based, life circumstances, but all I know is that you must accept it, and trust that every fiber of your being will do what it must do to survive.
I rode. I started climbing the mountain. I was dry. Under supplied. My mind said that all that lied ahead was demise. But I climbed.
The mountain failed to stop my trip. I got the top, dehydrated and emaciated. However, I am only human, and once I realized all I did was walk 3 miles of the remaining 40 miles I had before any civilization, my body relinquished. I made a lean-to with my blanket and sat underneath to avoid the sun which beat down on me, unrelentingly. My only plan was to outlast it. Wait for night, try to continue the trek, the journey, the fight.
People came to my rescue! I suppose my pathetic attempt at a roadside shelter attracted enough attention that passerby’s felt a need to investigate.
First a man and his daughter, traveling back from Yosemite, stopped and gave me some cold, delicious water. Thank you. I sat back and sipped. A few minutes later two dudes stopped and gave me juice and oranges. I felt like they were team Mom’s serving snacks during half time of Pop Warner football games. It was awesome.
I had what I needed. I drank and fed and continued on down the road around 4 pm.
40 miles or so is still a long way to ride, regardless of hills and hunger and dehydration effects. I stopped on the roadside a few separate time to hitchhike. One guy stopped to give me water, but couldn’t give me a ride because he was driving a company truck. Keep your job and take care of your family. I understand.
It was about to be dusk and I just decided to post after travelling a few feet further. I was done, at least for the night. I started to settle in and take another nap. Conserve energy.
A few minutes passed….
A few more…….
It was almost night….
A random truck pulled onto the shoulder a few hundred feet after passing me. I ran to it. They were Marines traveling from Camp Pendaltin, where my brother is also stationed, to Texas. They gladly gave me a ride.
I immediately fell asleep. I woke up to “Yo, Dude! We’re here. Where do you wanna get dropped off at?”
I said “Where are we?”
They said “At a Carl’s Jr. in Kingman, AZ.”
I said “This is perfect.”
They dropped me off, right of the 40 Fwy at a Carl’s in Kingman, AZ. I had completed the first part of my journey. I had made it.