Farewell Dancing Rabbit, Hello Wisconsin
Tuesday, June 08, 2010
Location: Madison Public Library, Wisconsin
Dancing Rabbit, I barely knew thee...
More stories about my life and times at Dancing Rabbit have been requested. So now, from the public library up here in Madison, I attempt to collect my thoughts and remember a few highlights. (I have a feeling that before this journey is over, I'll have enough memories and stories for a book-length narrative. There was a time when I churned out reams of text on a semi-daily basis about mundane stuff like eating sushi and biking back and forth across whatever town I happened to live in all the time. Then I started writing less and less, and living more and more (albeit in an undocumented manner). Maybe someday a healthy balance will be found.)
Three days before I left Dancing Rabbit, a vicious storm struck suddenly and fiercely. It was late afternoon. It had generally been a clear, sunny (but not over-hot) day. But as dusk approached, clouds drifted in on the distant horizon, bringing wind, lightning, and thunder with them. I had just gotten out of the swimming pond as the storm approached...
Had I been "sensible", I might have immediately returned to my tent to verify that my things would be secure from the storm. As it was, I found myself in someone else's lodging, having what seemed at the time to be a very important conversation. Even though I knew my stuff was probably getting drenched, in that moment, I preferred without a doubt to remain exactly where I was. (On that, no more shall be written here.)
It gushed and it poured. Within minutes, the ground everywhere was covered with water. Foot paths became splashing streams, tree branches fell, and a number of residents celebrated the storm by getting naked and racing around the village amidst the downpour.
After the rain abated somewhat, I returned to find my sleeping bag and many of my clothes soaked, although nothing critical appeared to be damaged. (I would later discover that my digital camera doesn't quite work properly anymore. It still powers on, and the pictures I took previously are still in it, but none of the controls work. As this journey continues, I find my reliance on technology being tested at every turn. What does one do when everything begins to break?)
Some friendly neighbors loaned me a sleeping bag, pillow, and dry towels. Since the storm appeared to have stopped, I tried hanging some stuff up to dry, but the rain resumed, albeit at a more moderate pace, throughout the night. Eventually though, the following day, blessed sun returned.
The severity of the storm, among other things, gave me reason to reconsider the notion of trying to get a bike to ride hundreds of miles. Though the flexibility would be appealing, more preparation would be needed.
Instead, I bought a train ticket to Wisconsin, which is where I am at present. I still haven't yet figured out how I'm going to traverse the remaining 100 miles from here to Dreamtime, but there will be time for that tomorrow.
Synchronistically, shortly after arriving in Madison, when I stopped to sit on a bench downtown to rest, I was offered chili by a local group whose technique reminds me altogether too much of some friends back home. (Different faith/motivation, but the results come out astoundingly similar; even they have had issues with law enforcement too.)
My time is up now. Gotta run.