Thursday, December 8, 2016

From Home to Eternity

On the strange chance this app will stay open long enough to let me post I will attempt an update
I have not been able to use my phone to post here while I have traveled across the nation since the beginning of October. Either I lacked signal when I drove around many National Parks and historic sights or the "app" would simply not properly link with my device. During this extended jaunt from my home in Louisville I also completed a walk over the high plateau in New Mexico from The Pecos to The Rio Grande River in Albuquerque. Then I drove back across the South revisiting thousands of miles that I had walked through the years before returning briefly for Thanksgiving celebrations in Louisville. I then traveled to Northern Florida and began from the west side of Tallahassee heading east through the city. On the second evening I received a call telling me of the passing of my dear friend Dennis Allen.
 Dennis and I met in our teenage years and kept a close friendship over the years despite his living sometimes in Kentucky and much of his life in Florida. We traveled together hitchhiking to California in our twenties, worked with one another at times professionally. From his home in Florida I have begun two walks rolling the World ball to promote diabetes awareness. Few people in life have I known to be as good and true a friend, Dennis Wayne Allen.
All that said I am now in South Florida with his family to see him off and celebrate his life.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Posting problems

This app keeps kicking me out to my home screen. Posting on facebook.
In Tallahassee now after walking to Albuquerque then driving home for the holiday.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Second Attempt

Three years ago I attempted to walk from Lubbock to Albuquerque. I pinched a nerve and had to go back home.
Now I am back, taking up where I left off.
 I was about twenty miles East of Fort Sumner on Friday when I started at about four in the afternoon. I walked about four miles, then walked back to bring the van forward. This is a new twist, walking back after a short distance, rather than walking all day with the faith that I will somehow get a ride. When it gets dark, I will start walking back if I haven't found help.. This worked out fine for Nice (the dog), he liked the change in routine.
Saturday morning we walked the remaining two and a half miles into Tiban. The only commerce going on there anymore is in the Post Office. The church, a hollow shell,on the edge of town where the road was widened and sidewalks laid down from the post recession stimulus. An attempt to uplift the town, but it was not enough to save Tiban. The woman at the Post Office watched the world while I returned for the van. After that I was able to get a few rides so at the end of the day I did not have to walk back for the van. Even at the end of the day, as I was about to start back, I sat down to change my socks and a nice family picked us up.  Today, Sunday, I met Tom, in his ranger convertible, who gave me a ride once I made my way into Fort Sumner. I am staying at the RV Park next door to The Billy the Kid Museum so I could have some electricity and water. I took some time to repaint the world before the long miles ahead without a town for a great distance.  I hope I will not have to walk the distance twice. It may have to be. The nights get cold and I'd rather keep the purple van, filled with blankets and dog food, within a couple of hours walking distance.
I am having trouble getting the app to let me log onto this blog, for now updates will be mostly on my facebook.
 Erik Bendl, Louisville, Kentucky.
When I need help I will ask on facebook.
This is, if I have a signal.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Following Tracks

I successfully walked from Tampa to Naples. I drove down a few days before Christmas picking up my 24 year old son in Pensacola. He is traveling and he wanted to see me. We drove along the coast around the Big Bend stopping to see Manatees and visiting Cedar Key. Igot my son whatever he wanted, a "hobo ice cream", a "po boy sandwich" and gave him a change of clothes (whether he wanted them or not). I also gave him my Carhart jacket. We walked together for a few days rolling from Tampa, south. Spending Christmas with my son in Bradenton, we had breakfast by the beach at Anna Marie, dinner was Chinese carry-out. We visited the beaches and saw a movie. Having had enough of the walking and the media (people were recognizing him even when we were not with the ball) I gave him what he wanted for Christmas, a ride to the highway. I took him a hundred miles north, out of range of the television viewing area that had caught up with us the day we left Tampa, and the local newspapers along the way...I guess it was time. The next day another TV station came to film the story and when I had rolled through Fort Myers the NBC affiliate had there coverage on Good Morning America (again). That would have really disappointed my boy's desire to go "low profile". I hope he finds happiness wherever he goes.
When I had walked through Naples we, Nice (the dog) and me, we're a half of a mile from the end of the sidewalk, before the narrow roadside into the Everglades, when the dog, after rolling in the grass to scratch his own back, threw his shoulder out. He couldn't walk. I, thankfully, got a ride back to the van from a woman we had met the day prior. When I got Nice out of her car he stretched , (downward facing dog), and popped his shoulder back into place with a loud snap'. Along with the Fortune Cookie I got the night before which said, "Why take two steps when one will do?", I decided not to walk my old dog across the Everglades or through Miami. Another time perhaps.
We the drove to Pompano to visit my good friends Dennis, Meribeth and Seamus (the dog) in Pompano Beach.
Over a week later both of us were thoroughly recharged. Five mile walks to the beach each day were just not enough for my old hound. The weather above the Panhandle had turned cold and harsh, I have decided to continue my vacation with a short nostalgic walk up the coast, retracing our walk of five years ago... At least until the weather breaks.
Maybe Nice (the dog) can see Patti in Jupiter who he fell in love with and then searched for her along every road for years.
Wherever the road, I meet good people, some with miraculous stories of diabetes management, some with heartfelt loss from diabetes and many who stay healthier with a little daily walk.
Love yourself a little, enjoy a stroll with a companion.
Have a (Nice) day.