Selling Surly, letting go and creating space for curiosity
Today I sold a valiant steed: my Surly touring bicycle that I had the privilege of riding more than 30,000Km across dozens of countries. My bike was a friend; it was patient, reliable, and always listened, even when I was irritable. I custom built this bicycle to last a lifetime, as I imagined myself riding it with grey streaks in my hair. I love cycling and I thought I would be touring forever. However, in my heart I know that this chapter of my life is at its end. Having the bike—and the subsequent gear—was a fail safe; I could always ride off into the sunset if I wanted an escape, or if life became too challenging. Now I do not have that option, and it’s a little frightening.
As I continue a life of greater purpose I have discovered that I need to make room for new ideas; there is only so much I can mentally hold onto. I can remember the past, and cherish it, but I know that if I hold onto it, then I will never truly experience the present. The same goes for physical items. If I am not using it or getting value from it, then I should pass it on. There is a side of my brain—the fear side—that says, “hey Jason, what if you want to go touring in a couple years?”
The other side of my brain—the curious side—replies, “well, I see your point, but I want to explore and create new things. I want to tussle with the present moment. And if I want to go touring again, then I will cross that bridge if I get there.” I have given over to the creative, curious side of my brain that is not ruled by fear. And as it stands I close an old chapter, and start one anew.
So let go of the past, and let go of the things that are not adding value to your life. By minimizing my possessions and moving on from old projects I have created more space, both in the physical sense as well as the mental sense. I feel lighter, looser, and more free. I feel less restraint as my life is starting to revolve around my current projects, instead of past endeavours. The feeling is amazing!
The life of my green-machine goes on, and now it has the opportunity to shape another life. Although the bike may change hands, the lessons learned through cycle touring will be shared unanimously. And when I think about the lessons that the bike has taught me, I smile gratefully, and know that those will last a lifetime.