It all started with a bike trip in the fall of 2010. Myself and six other guys decided to spend our fall break biking from Goshen, IN to Michigan (Battle Creek, South Haven, and Warren Dunes State Park). By the end of the trip I was hooked; I loved the feeling of reaching new destinations via bicycle, carrying everything I needed with me, and the bonding experience that came with traveling with a group of friends. Soon afterward I bought my first bike (the Surly Cross Check) and the following two summers I worked at a local bike shop in Robinson Township, PA.
I was born in Kansas City but grew up near Pittsburgh, PA. While I have fond memories of biking to “downtown” Coraopolis with my brothers and parents, I would have never have guessed that someday I would bike my way home from Paraguay. At Goshen College, my interests have broadened considerably. I have double majored in both Physics and Art and I am passionate about connecting with people from cultures different from my own. Studying the Chinese culture and teaching English while in China for Goshen College’s SST program opened up my eyes to the size of the world, helped me to grow spiritually as I connected with host families and numerous Chinese citizens, and pushed me outside of my comfort zone as I faced the challenge of language barriers.
In the context of this bike trip, I am most excited about making new connections with people of different cultures. I am also eager to improve my Spanish, explore God’s kingdom, and connect with North and South American churches. While I know there will be difficult times ahead, I hope that the challenges to come will shape and mold me in new ways.
During the trip there will be plenty of moments when I will miss my parents Max and Lynda, my bros Ben and Sam, and friends from Pittsburgh and Goshen. Please feel free to send emails or prayers. Even short snippets and brief words of encouragement can help motivate us to peddle onward.