Update for April 2018
I owe my family, friends, fellow cyclists and followers of the World Tour on 2 Wheels (WT2W) an update. Here it is.
An unscheduled stop
By mid November last year, I was making some money and enjoying the beautiful gems of O’ahu while housesitting a wonderful dome house in Ewa Beach. The best holidays of the year were fast approaching and an idea began to circle my mind. What if I go home for the holidays and I enjoy the entire holiday season in the company of my loved ones, one more time?
So 2 days before Thanksgiving I took a flight to LAX. And then the next day I flew from Long Beach to Salt Lake City.
From the Salt Lake City airport I took an Uber to Layton where various members of my family were gathered for Thanksgiving weekend. I surprised everyone there, as no one knew I was coming, and I was able to spend Thanksgiving surrounded by family while enjoying an awesome, memorable and delicious Thanksgiving dinner, made the traditional way.
A disgrace or a blessing in disguise?
Before leaving Hawai’i I noticed a little red rash popping up on the left side of my ribcage. I thought that perhaps a small spider had bitten me. There was a trail of bumps that were aligned and stretched from the back to the front of my ribcage. As the days passed I began to feel pain, headache and extreme fatigue. The bumps grew in number, covered a bigger area and the severity of pain increased.
They turned into blisters (big ones!) and the pain became severe. I soon found out it was a shingles infection which is viral. I read all I could to understand what was going on and decided to avoid medical treatment. Instead I turned to natural remedies and chose to be stoic against the pain.
I have had my share of illnesses throughout my life and I have been hurt many times, so I’m acquainted with pain but this episode took the prize as the most miserable, dwarfed only by 3 kidney stones I passed more than a decade ago.
After hearing testimonies from many people that had a shingles infection, I learned that my case was extreme. It covered an extensive area, took more than 5 weeks for my skin to heal and the pain went away very slowly for a long period of time.
This situation prevented me from doing anything. I could not function as I was used to. I couldn’t work, I couldn’t exercise, I couldn’t do anything at all.
At this time, I was so grateful that I was back home and could be cared for by members of my immediate family as all I could do was rest; any other activity was very painful. The months passed by and the situation didn’t change much, I started to question if the tour was over. I knew I couldn’t do it under those circumstances.
My mother’s birthday came, then Christmas, then New Years, Dia de Reyes, Valentine’s, and by mid March the situation finally began to change- the pain started to diminish. I tried running again, I even took my backup bike out of the box and started cycling as well.
I was able to do little chores for short periods of time.
Right now I’m about 90% healed but dealing with postherpetic neuralgia. For some people, shingles pain continues long after the blisters have cleared. Sometimes for as long as several years. This condition is known as postherpetic neuralgia, and it occurs when damaged nerve fibers send confused and exaggerated messages of pain from your skin to your brain.
The positive in everything
I’m a believer. I’m a man of faith and I see the divine providence working in my life and altering my timeline all the time.
This unforeseeable mishap brought about the opportunity of tying up loose ends. Before leaving California, and in order to start the tour, I had to put all my remaining belongings inside a shipping container. This container was stored in my mother’s backyard, closed with two padlocks, and then I left.
This unplanned break gave me the time I needed to sell everything that remained and completely unload the container before resuming the tour.
Additionally, I’ve been able to recoup some of the funds I spent during the 6 month I traveled through Hawai’i.
My mother also fell ill several times and I was able to give back care and support to her.
Lastly, I was able to complete some pending projects for the tour, which I’m so excited for.
Now I can finally share the glad news that I am finally well enough to get back on the road!
The tour will soon be able to resume. I don’t have a set departure date yet, but I will definitely be flying back to Hawai’I in the month of May. I’ll reunite with my beloved Pegaso, my tour gear, check out a few more places leftover on my Hawai’i list, and take some more awesome pictures and videos.
My next stop is New Zealand and I will hopefully arrive there by June.
I’m preparing few surprises and want to hear back from you once I reveal them to all of you.