August First. Crossing.

August 4, 2012

Wednesday August First

the monastery


I left Melonai’s house around 10 AM. I had to run some errands, then went to meditate at the monastery one more time. I sat inside the ruins. The day was almost stormy looking but all forecasts announced no precipitations. This is a place I will not forget. It was actually kind of a memory to come here… walk up the steps to the main door and kneel… as in the times of the knights… I would walk up almost feeling a sword at my waist and a profound respect for the spiritual. Uncanny.

I got on the bike and leisurely headed south towards the border on the 75.

My thought : I am ready for anything. A yes, a no. I have two plans. I have decided to not be attached to either. One way or the other the goal is to progress. I have music to write, voyages to organize. Anything that makes my life worth living for me an others.


I arrived at the border at around 1 PM. It was a long wait. One car, taking a lot of time. I can’t say I was completely zen. I had to breathe deeply at times, calm my heart, remind myself of equanimity.   There is something so upsetting about being questioned by a guard.  Must be centuries of experience in human unfairness.  It always makes me nervous no matter what.

There was a moment when answering the officer’s questions, I thought he was going to say no, turn around, go back… Then there was this slightly “Force”  moment when in my mind the two choices were side by side, and I kind of conversationally said in my head : “ Let this girl go through.” 

He said :”All right, have a great day and drive safe.”

I crossed.

My reaction surprised me. I did not scream, cry, laugh or yell or some loud sort of emotional outburst.  I just kind of had a moan as I looked around, on the other side, the pavement, the sky, I rolled out slowly, not wanting to make mistakes. For miles and miles  I kept thinking someone was going to come and  pluck me off the bike and send me back. 

I took a right.

I needed gas, summoned the GPS, it said 4 miles ahead. 4 miles ahead, nothing. Recessions do that. Things are there, then they’re not. I wasn’t sure what to do so I pulled off the road in a deserted driveway. I was consulting the GPS when a voice arose.

Do you need anything?”

Huh? Where did she come from? I was at the entrance of a half mile long driveway… how did she…?

She was really nice, about my age, she lives in California but is here at the family farm, she was going across to Grand Ma’s house, she used to ride bikes, knew the feeling of being on the reserve… sent me on my way.

Oh there you go. America. So reviled and criticized by so many but when I am in your midst, only angels show up…

This place is rural.  Farms, farmers, fields, crops as far as one can see.  I stopped in Cavalier got gas and a bite to eat.  A grizzled guy asked me : 

” ‘You Motorcycle Girl?” 


“… I knew a guy, he went down over the railroad tracks, he lost all the skin on his face…  when he fell… Lost his eyeball too.”  He was eyeing me closely to see if I’d be grossed out or outraged or something. 

“Was he wearing a helmet?”


“Well that would do it…” 

“Well you have a nice day.” 

“You too.”

When you ride a bike in general you’ll elicit two types of conversations :  envy conversations or death and mauling conversations.

When I went to pay the waitress she asked :
“So you’re traveling on the bike?” 


“By yourself?  That is brave…”

“Oh I love it, and I’m good company.”  

… Well, I guess you also get the “brave” “ballsy” “gutsy” comments too…

This place must have been here since the 5o’s I don’t know if anything was changed aside from the addition of a flat screen TV. But again, the people were nice, welcoming in a gentle rural sort of way. They look at you in the eye, say what they think but grant you your space.



The roads are straight as arrows. Cutting up the territory; this is yours, this is theirs, this is mine. Farmers, pick up trucks, I fuelled up regularly, rode along ripe and ready fields of grain, the land like artwork.  I looked around. Breathed. Laughed at times. Almost cried a bit at others. I sang the Turkish song for a while. I did not speed. 97 to 111 km\hr. It would seem wrong to speed.   Fields of wheat, oats, barley… and other things. The smells…

I rode until about 9 PM when I arrived in Minot.

The sun was straight on the horizon I stopped at this huge trucker spot, restaurant, gas station. I ordered a burger. Awful. Just awful. I moved on, got back on the bike, found Starbucks and the wifi that comes with it. Night is coming.


After Starbucks I landed at a campground just outside town, I met with a very friendly motorcycle riding couple from Saskatchewan and a US army fellow who was camping there.   I learned that there is an oil rush in North Dakota and the whole place is furiously trying to do business, make money and get ahead.  Another part of the population has been flooded last spring and is having a really hard time.  Dreams of riches and tough as nails times. 

my ride and my Canadian neighbors’s rig, they pull the trailer with the tent.

I hung out until midnight or so.  I played a bit of guitar.  The moon was glorious. 

the moon as best as I could capture her


3 Responses to “August First. Crossing.”

  1. It is simply good that you are HERE. Simply good.

  2. Christopher Percy Says:

    Way to go Danielle, way to use the power of NOW!!! And the Jedi mind trick was good too.

  3. Charlotte Says:

    : D Can’t wait to see you! : D

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