Photographs, The Great Adventure

A Thank You Postcard

This is a postcard to thank all my readers.

Back in May I asked for help purchasing gear for the Adventure. Scores of readers came through and helped raise hundreds of dollars. The gear you funded is a blessing. It’s proved its worth every day of my trip.

I promised that high-end donors would receive postcards in the mail, and the first batch of those go out today (if you’re expecting one and don’t receive it, let me know!). But I also wanted to do something special for all of my donors—every single one of you who helped contribute to launching the Great Adventure. Thank you. And many thanks to each and every reader. Your support, your clicks on the Tweet button, your Facebook shares, your comments and your kind words all help keep me going.

This is for all of you.

This is a nostalgic place. Minneapolis used to be a flour town, the mills driven by St. Anthony Falls in the Mississippi River. Old mill buildings cling to both banks. The graceful Stone Arch Bridge reaches across. One side of the falls is where my house (and temple) was, when I lived here; the other side is what you see pictured above. The Gold Medal Flour mill was partly destroyed in a fire, then sat vacant until the Minnesota Historical Society turned the ruins into a museum. Incidentally, I used to work at the Historical Society.

I’ve walked there many times. Across the river, friends and I came out of movies and argued plot holes over drinks. When I broke my ankle I walked the bridge to strengthen it up. And many nights I coasted past this lamppost, deep in troubled thought about how to put adventure back in my life.

Now I’ve gone there perhaps for the final time, and I knew it was the picture to send to all my rogues.

Mad love.

Adventure, The Great Adventure, Travel

Gear Drive Results

Over the past few weeks I’ve run a gear drive here on Rogue Priest. The purpose of the drive was to raise half the cost needed to purchase high quality, reliable gear for the Great Adventure.

I’m pleased to announce that the Gear Drive was a complete success.

In the original post I set a goal of $860, and you exceeded that goal with a grand total of $870! The other half of the money needed for gear was saved by yours truly.

Over the past week, I’ve purchased the following items, thanks in part to all you wonderful donors:

  • 14″ Lenovo ThinkPad notebook computer
  • Hennessy Asym Classic camping hammock (this has built-in mosquito netting and a rain fly, outperforming most bivies and tents for comfort on the trail)
  • Apple iPhone 4, lightly used, for a bargain price of $265—and not tied to a service plan!
  • Sleeping bag rated to 25° (plenty for the places I’m going)
  • Circuit backpack from ÜLA, holds 69 liters and up to 35 pounds
  • Rope, carabiners, dry sack and other odds and ends

Of course there are still items to pick up—shoes and water bottles are high on the list—but the biggest items are taken care of and the rest are on the way. This week I’ll be setting up the hammock and testing it out.

None of this would have been possible without all the support that dozens of people showed throughout the gear drive, and my sincerest thanks go out to each and every one of you. And thanks also to everyone who tweets, shares, comments and follows along. You guys are an inspiration to me.

If you weren’t able to make a donation, there are plenty of ways to get involved. The best is to live the adventure yourself: travel freely, seek your legend and live for your ideals. If you can’t go yet or you already found your dream, help a traveler next time you have a chance.

The road is as cheerful as the people we meet.