This blog's for ME

Almost 25 years old, asking my parents if I can sleep in their bed with them. I had thought I was going to be the 25th Prime Minister of Canada. Things had changed. 10 years later, I was still a scared little boy. The time had come to slap myself awake. One Saturday morning, November 19th, 2009, I declared to the world I would be riding my 10 year-old motorcycle from Vancouver, BC Canada to Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, and back.

The official departure was August 28th, 2010. A group of well-wishers saw me off at 8:03 am.

I arrived in Rio de Janeiro around 6 pm March 1st, 2011.



My return to Vancouver came on July 5th, 2011 about 2:00 pm.

Drug & alcohol abuse, ADD, social anxiety, health, chronic pain, night terrors.

So many concerns. But I am far more interested in this question: Do I have the capacity to make this trip despite all my shortcomings?

My mission: To inspire myself to face my fears, enlighten myself on how all living things can peacefully co-exist, enjoy every moment, and see the world as plentiful and generous.

Go ahead. Call me crazy. Call me anything you like.

I'm out to save my world.



I LOVE YOU ALL



Questions, comments, concerns, threats? Contact me: jason.chapman99@gmail.com


Pain

Such immense, insurmountable, aggravating pain. This evening I could hardly stand it; it was the first time I remember on this trip wanting to die, to end it all. Hemingway style.

Coward.

There was only one thing to do, and a drastic one. Lay belly down on the hard floor, and hope that the comfort that came from previous attempts would visit me again.

It started the year of 9/11 and I was so stubbornly committed to re-writing an entire database I sat on a hard chair for 8 hours a day. 3 months in, I could barely sit down for a half hour without my legs and gluts tingling and going numb, my arms had such bad carpal tunnel I couldn't make a fist, and my eyes burned whenever I looked at a computer screen. Commitment, some sort of commitment to make myself good enough, to banish the demons of self-doubt and feel accomplished. The damage done may be permanent.

I spent many of the remaining years undermining my health in so many other ways, just to have a taste of success. Today, I finally surrendered. It was a day of fully understanding the limitations of my body, and the extent to which blood and bone can be pushed. Water was obviously deemed unnecessary by my ADD brain, far less important than making a difference, or making money, or attaining goals.

Luis and I had stayed behind at the mechanic's while Pablo and Marivy took my saddle bags in for repair, along with my jacket to sew badges onto. When 'Snoopy', aka Luis the amazing owner/auto mechanic had asked me yesterday if I had had a manual for him to look at, I realized it had fallen out somewhere between Stettler, and Mexico City through the long tear in the bottom of the left bag. Although my thoughts were of a bike that needed repair, it was my body that was actually falling apart, and there was an absence of a mechanic who was to fix it, or even maintain it.

The pain in my back has been so intense over the last month, I've had to contort my body in unimaginable ways simply to relieve the distressed muscles, and all of this while riding on the motorcycle. Turns out the BMW, or KLM stand up style of bike is far easier on the back to ride, as you are forced to sit up straight. 2 out of 7 days in Puerto Vallarta with Bonnie were spent on my back in the sand, as it seemed the only way to relieve the pain. Pain relievers were out of the question for me, because I knew I had to stop doing what was causing the damage, and not rely on something to mask, or 'band-aid' the problem. At the mechanic shop, I was kneeling down, and standing up to stretch somehow, but the pain was not letting up.

The amazing mechanics had fixed my electrical short problem in 5 minutes, and I was curious as to how exactly they did it, especially since I thought it would be a nightmare in hell. Luis translated everything from the mechanics to me, and as he was telling me, I stood up, and rather quickly at that. I remember feeing the blood rush to my head like a tidal wave, and of an intensity I had never experienced before. My knees buckle, and I try desperately to maintain control as the world started to spin around me. Down on the ground, the feeling passes and I try to collect myself while Luis is crying "Jason! Jason! What's wrong? Are you ok?" As I'm on the ground recovering I'm thinking "was it a seizure?" "No, I'm ok Luis. I'm ok," I reply slowly after my eyes focus again. Marivy, and subsequently Pablo are on the phone with strict orders to get some water in my system. Dehydration causing the thick blood to rush to my head and black me out. I'm lucky I had my wits enough to avoid a nasty crack of the head on the concrete.

A couple hours of solid work: some bolts on the windshield and back seat, a repaired rear tail light electrical system, a screw on the front light, the owner's personal trip to the hardware store for a foot peg bolt, and a rubber emission hose to replace the 'surgical tube', as they called it that I had bought in T.O., California. Cost: $ 0 pesos. Nada. Nothing. I couldn't believe it. Luis 'Snoopy' the mechanic, on a personal recommendation from the young man who shares his name, gave me his, and 2 of his mechanics time for free. He said it was a gift from Mexico to Canada. I gave him my card with my blog on it, and said this is my gift to you.

Just in case you need auto repairs and you find yourself in Mexico City, give 'Snoopy' a call, and tell him Jason from Canada sent you. I have a feeling he has a soft spot for us, somehow.

Luis Juambelz V.
Automotriz Snoopy, S.A. de C.V.
Arbol del Fuego No. 43
Col Candelaria Coyoacan
04380 Mexico, D.F. Tel 5618-6620 o 5618-6245
automotriz_snoopy@hotmail.com

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