May 4th, 2001

May 13, 2001 � HAPPY MOTHERS DAY


Finally, out of good old sunny California. It�s weird too because the day I enter Oregon is the first day without sunshine. I had to include at least one self portrait so I figured if my placement was right, I could replace my head for the O in the Welcome to Oregon sign. Worked out pretty well, wouldn�t ya say.

CLICK TO ENLARGE After many request, the pictures in this email can finally be enlarged. Just click on them and you can see them in all their grown up glory.

It took a little while but San Francisco had to be parted with. It was tough because it�s the last big city I�ll hit til �� hmmm, well, I guess the last big city I�ll hit. The ride across Golden Gate and through Sausalito was lovely. Besides the wind, the ride up the Pacific Coast is amazing. There is so much change just in California alone. The landscape and climate could be in two different parts of the world and the wildlife gets more bizarre as you head north (banana slugs and elk last night). What I�m getting at is there should be a split between Northern and Southern California. Just like the Dakotas and Carolinas. We�ll get to that some other time.

While venturing up the coast we (Brooke and I) stopped in Mendocino to visit the Mendicino Cancer Resource Center. CLICK TO ENLARGE What a great place. Ayn, the assistant director, filled us in on what they do. They are an organization that is committed to providing a wide range of information, support, and advocacy for those who are living with cancer and for their families and friends. We also figured out a great way for rideforcancer to help raise money for MCRC. They are currently holding a raffle for a trip for two to Tuscany. You don�t have to be present in Mendocino and the tickets start are only $10 so click here for details. They really need the help and this is their biggest fundraiser of the year, so, get on the move cause the drawing will be held June 9. The gentlemen in the picture with Ayn and I are doing community service and helping sell raffle tickets.

CLICK TO ENLARGE Climbing into the Humboldt Redwoods State Park was where the most significant changes took place. After climbing, and descending over 2,000 feet, I was headed for the 20 mile long Avenue of the Giants. It worked out well because we heard the best camping was in the middle of the park and it was a 75 mile day so I was blessed with the first six miles of the Giants at twilight time when the roads were fairly vacant. Then the next morning, I rode the next 14 miles before most people fired up their homes on wheels. It�s hard to react when you�re riding through redwood groves with trees over 200 feet tall. A combination of drooling and ahhhhh-ing was all I could do. Oh, and sing a bit too. Always gotta sing. CLICK TO ENLARGE

The moment you�ve all been waiting for�


Shuggie Otis � Inspiration Information
This CD has not left my personal CD player since I left Long Beach. I�m not kidding. Shuggie�s got it goin� on. It�s Psychedelic California Soul at its finest. Originally released 30 or so years ago only to end up in the hands of lucky collectors, it has now been reissued on Luaka Bop with bonus tracks. If you like groovy funky soul music, this is a must. This and all other titles can be purchased at Fingerprints in Belmont Shore.

Beach Boys � Sunflower & Surfs Up
Another pair of records released 30 years ago. These two albums were recently reissued on one CD. If you don�t already own Pet Sounds (#1 album of all time), you should start there. If you do, or just want to take a chance, check it out. By 1970 the Beach Boys had already gone through their �teen surf music� phase and were able to make the music they wanted. Everybody pitches in on these albums to make them very well balanced and a pleasure to listen to. The title track off Surfs Up still gives me chills every time I hear it.

Radiohead � Amnesiac
OK, something that isn�t 30 years old. This disc is definitely the companion disc to Kid A, the mind blowing album they released last year. Do expect a lot of electronic influence but also plan on pure pop melodys infused with casino sounds and Tom Waits ghost. Just like above, it�s probably better to pick up one of Radiohead�s earlier albums. You can�t go wrong with this band.


Last thoughts. Missed Woody Harrelson who was riding his bike from Seattle to Santa Barbara with some friends to promote Simple Organic Living. Favorite signs; 7% grade next 4 miles, Bike Lane, Hot Fresh Donuts. Least Favorite signs; No Shoulder, Watch for Bicyclist, Loose Gravel. Is there something wrong with a thirty-foot tall blue ox and/or a fifty-foot tall Paul Bunyan that talks to you?

CLICK TO ENLARGE Big Thanks on the most recent leg of the journey to: Albion River Campground, Brooke, the lady who gave me the free lemon Danish, Arno, my mom (Happy Mothers Day), and Steve for the Beach Boys CD.

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And like my friend Polly at would say - Ships are always safe in the harbor but that's not what ships are for,
Matt Allen