I had been to Colorado a few times before this trip, but this was my first time visiting during the summer. I had spent the winter of 2006/7 as a ski instructor at Arapahoe Basin, near Breckenridge while living on my brother's couch. I forgot how much I missed the mountains. I think it's likely that I move to Colorado sometime soon in my life, too many years have gone by avoiding winters in the Bahamas and not skiing. My time in CO was defined by good people and good music. I made some great friends here, life-longers. Big thanks to Brendan Fung, an old neighbor and friend that let me use his place as a home base. To Kendal Banks for blessing me with your presence and introducing me to your awesome friends and our cool campsite, oh and your car, and the dreadlock that's already gone. Big thanks to Liesl Breuner who organized a bone marrow drive at her sorority, Pi Sigma Phi, where we registered 20 potential life savers! Big Thanks to my awesome BeTheMatch Denver Rep, Tarika Cefkin for setting up an incredible day at Children's Hospital where we registered 27 more potential life savers! I got to see Phish at Dick's Sporting Goods Park, Citizen Cope and Counting Crows at Red Rocks, and an awesome performance by my friend Zea's band at a really cool venue on an organic farm house property. Lastly, one of my best friends happened to be flying into Denver, he was picked up at the airport in a limousine and taken to his downtown loft apartment. It's no surprise that when Michael Lindner and I join forces, the rockstarness-o-meter itself, when judging us, slowly malfunctioned and put out a steady stream of smoke, a squeal, and fell apart, lever by lever, and it dropped hopelessly to the ground and became forever ineffective and obsolete. Michael is the lead singer and rockstar from the band 28 North named after the highway in Pittsburgh. With Mike around, expect long nights of sing alongs and prank calls to fast food joints. We went to the Denver Zoo in a limousine, nuff said. Please check out 28 North the band! http://28north.com
From Denver, Shane and I were driven directly north to Cheyenne, where we will walk on interstate 80 across Wyoming into Utah. I'm very excited to get on the road again. Now that I'm walking with Shane, I've lost my paranoid and nervous edge that I had while walking the first four months alone. I often felt like I was being watched, which I usually was. I expect I make eye contact with at least a thousand people everyday while walking on a highway, wearing neon and waving flags.
The West will be a beautiful adventure that I can't wait to experience. It will be hot and it will get very cold at night. It will be very desolate and at times we will see up to four days without a gas station. I have to say, the first half of the walk has gone impeccably well. I've been blessed with great weather and everyday a new opportunity presented itself. From free motel rooms, to people pulling over to donate food, water, cash or housing or to swab, it's the people that have made the trip. With just two months left, I have a lot of walking to do, and I cant wait to see what opportunities arise as I get closer to California. Tomorrow morning will be our first time walking on an interstate in our lives. Wish us luck!