Author Archives: Peter

The Blue Ridge Mountains

The Games We Play

When you’re stuck on a bus for hours a day, you find some pretty novel ways to entertain yourself.

In particular, we’ve been playing a lot of word games and similar things that don’t require many, or even any supplies. A while ago, the four of us that were in the back of the bus wrote “Exquisit Haikus” in which one of us would choose the topic, and the the other three would each write a line of a haiku about that topic without seeing the other two lines. We wrote a double-sided page full of them, but these are some of my favorites:

“Beef Jerkey”
‘Moos’ have become ‘mmms’
Delicious, brown and holy
Vegetarian!

“Lunch
What will it be then?
Triscuits, triscuits, and nacho
Eh, Let me at ‘em!

“Bathroom Stall Graffiti”
Yo, check my myspace
Blasphemy and name-calling
Portrait of a dick

Xaq had boggle on the bus, so we played a lot of that. And then, a few days ago, Nathan Fieldsteel sent me a mesasge on my facebook, challanging me to find words that could be broken in two that weren’t compound words (example: pant/her or beg/inning). He and I went back and forth, each thinking of a few a day until I enlisted the help of the bus, and together we thought up around 200 of these “nonpound” words in three days.

That one was a lot of fun because we would all just be sitting in silence, rolling down the highway, and then one of us would shout out “Warden!” and someone else would scurry to get a pad of paper.

At another point, we started coming up with band names or movie titles we could string together. We would make chains by connecting two titles, one that ended with the same word that another began with. Some of my favorites were;

“Nicklebackstreetboystomenatwork”

and

“Miracle at St. Anna and the King and I Love You Man on Fire in the Deep Blue Seabiscuit”

We spent a lot of time coming up with absurd in jokes, which I won’t even try to recount here. We also discussed different minor celeberties we should use this trip as a vehicle to meet. Gore Vidal, Kathy Griffin, Randal Munroe, and Christopher Hitchens were all suggested, but eventually we settled on Gary Oldman (yes, you do actually know who he is. Go here if you don’t believe me). So if you can help us meet Gary Oldman, please do.

We’ve spent a lot of time playing music, waving to people, and talking too. So far, the open road has been great fun.

Road Day #1

Our first real day on the road was great. I was actually going to be driving, but I had some work on my laptop that I wanted to do on my laptop, so Mike drove first, and ended up staying behind the wheel for the whole day.

We hopped on the highway from Cabella’s in East Hartford, Connecticut, where we had spent the night. They had a parking lot in the back designed for campers, and John knew a guy who worked in the restaurant inside who promised to fill us up with veggie oil. The oil ended up not coming through, but we were able to spend the night there, and had a great time doing so. Lisa, my girlfriend, and a friend of Ali’s named Melissa came to hang out with us, since we were still in driving distance from them. A little later into the evening, a Cabella’s employee named Laura came and sat with us on the bus. She told us stories about drunk people who tried to buy guns, and listened to our stories about the characters back in Middletown. A good night was had by all.

To finally be on such a long stretch of road felt really good. For most of the day, I got my enjoyment from watching the other drivers and the scenery go by. Anyone who’s ever ridden on a school bus knows how much nicer it is to be able to move around when you’re driving, and when you tear out all the seats and replace them with shag covered benches, it’s all that much better. At one point, when my butt was starting to get particularly numb, I actually took a nap by lying down in the aisle. Try doing that in your Toyota.

More updates, photos and video to come soon.

Soliciting Donations

Hey everyone.

I’ve put up a form letter in the forums (http://juanway.org/forum/topic.php?id=4) that can be used for soliciting sponsorship and donations from businesses. It’s written under the assumption that most places will want advertising in exchange for their monetary support.

If everyone could check this out, that’d be great. Obviously, the more outside money we could bring in for this trip, the better. But we really need to haul some butt. These sorts of transactions aren’t exactly quick and easy, and we really only have about a month to go (Oh my God, is that all?).

It won’t be too hard to print out a few copies of the letter and hand them out to local businesses. Think of it this way; every letter that we hand out is a potential steak dinner this summer.

Thanks to everyone who I know is going to help out! Let us know the results of your solicitations in the forums!

APRIL FOOLS!

Just a quick note for those of you who haven’t figured it out yet, the tour is still completely on schedule. The whole thing about drug smuggling and the FBI and the bus getting impounded was April Fools day prank. Though I’ve never met the guy who sold John the bus, I’m sure he’s a very nice man, and isn’t in any trouble with the law.
Thank you for all of your enthusiasm to keep the tour going, and we’ll keep you updated with any new developments!