Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving is the American holiday. We invented it and infused it with traditions of food and family, football and friends. At its foundation, the holiday is about giving thanks for the blessings laid upon us; blessings which every year exceed my trials.

PennsylvaniaThis year I rode across the shoulder of America, the strip between pavement and open land. In that sliver I received endless blessings, all of which deserve thanks today.

 

 

ChicagoFirst, thanks for everything that didn’t happen. Many warned I might get harassed, driven off the road, or mugged. Others feared Mother Nature would rail fierce against me. Still others chastened I’d get caught short of food, water or spare tires. None of that happened. My journey was rich in blessings of omission.

 

 

North DakotaThanks to the people I met along the way. Four hundred eleven people, many random strangers, responded to my question. I didn’t count those who stared at me in dumbfounded silence. Hundreds more, clerks and cashiers, librarians and local experts provided texture for my exploration. And thousands of drivers couldn’t help but smile through their windshields when I offered up a defensive wave.

Mt RushmoreThanks to the thoughtful dozen who penned detailed thoughts about ‘How will we live tomorrow?’ and the 204 other thinkers who responded to my question at profile length. These rich conversations gave me both a deeper and broader appreciation of our country.

 

 

TetonsFinally, a very personal thanks to the 132 different people who took me into their homes and gave me a place to lay my weary head. On most of my 196 nights away, family, friends, friends of friends, warmshowers hosts, couchsurfing hosts, and strangers took me in, nourished me, encouraged me, and allowed me to rejuvenate beneath their roof.

UtahI put myself in the elements in order to meet people, and have met fine Americans from coast to coast. When family and friends gather around our table this year, everyone who’s been a part of my odyssey will be with me in spirit and in thanksgiving.

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About paulefallon

Greetings reader. I am a writer, architect, cyclist and father from Cambridge, MA. My primary blog, theawkwardpose.com is an archive of all my published writing. The title refers to a sequence of three yoga positions that increase focus and build strength by shifting the body’s center of gravity. The objective is balance without stability. My writing addresses opposing tension in our world, and my attempt to find balance through understanding that opposition. During 2015-2106 I am cycling through all 48 mainland United States and asking the question "How will we live tomorrow?" That journey is chronicled in a dedicated blog, www.howwillwelivetomorrw.com, that includes personal writing related to my adventure as well as others' responses to my question. Thank you for visiting.
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4 Responses to Happy Thanksgiving!

  1. Kim C says:

    Happy Thanksgiving Paul! I hope you’re having a wonderful day with family and friends.

    Like

  2. Robert Botterio says:

    Paul. Hope you had a great thanksgiving. I know how much you love this time Of year. Bob

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Like

  3. paulefallon says:

    I am really glad to be home for at least some New England fall. The food, the people, the crisp air, the golden leaves. It’s very fine. Hope you had a nice feast; we will have ours with my children tomorrow.

    Like

  4. Jamie says:

    Hi Paul,

    Busy times…so I have not checked in with your blog for a while. But I have frequently thought (with envy) of you freely bicycling under open skies. So happy to hear it was/is a happy journey. You write so well. Wishing you all the best,

    Jamie

    Like

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