Day 18 – Drumheller to Youngstown, AB – 128km

I’m entirely spent, but in good spirits. Today won’t be
much of a blog post at all because I need to catch up on some sleep that I’ve
sacrificed recently.

I didn’t get on the road until late today—about 2pm. I was
heading directly east, fighting a head wind coming from the north east. My average
speed today was actually lower than it was most days in the mountains. I
finished biking just as the sun was setting.

The sky near Youngstown, Alberta, just when I finished cycling for the day.

I thought I was in the Prairies after I left Calgary, and
I suppose I technically have been in the Prairies. I didn’t see trees. There
was lots of wind. However, I was getting rather annoyed with the hills. The
Prairies didn’t seem that flat. It was like riding in Ontario, except with a
lot more wind, and a lack of forestry and lakes to occupy my mind. At some
point today, I truly entered the Prairies. The land truly became flat. Now
everything in my day depends on the wind. As well, sight is now deceptive. I
could see my final destination about a half-hour before I got to it. The vast
sky and endless fields are actually quite stunning. Yes, it can be boring (if
you don’t have the right mindset), but I also feel very proud to be Canadian
when I experience this astounding sense of space.

This campaign has been an immense amount of effort, but
there’s no doubt in my mind that every morsel of effort and strain is worth it.
On a personal level, I’ve always understood the issues surrounding AAC from my
family’s perspective. It’s amazing to hear what others struggle with,
accomplish, overcome, and strive to change. This is an experience of a lifetime
because what I’m learning from the people I’m meeting is changing the way I
think about myself, my own family, my own life, and my own society. So thank
you to everyone who has shared their story, educated me, changed me, and helped
me help others. I still have more than 70% of a country to cover and many more
people to meet. This is just as much a mental journey as it is a physical
journey. Here are some of the people in Calgary who I find inspiring.

Brodie

Duncan, the story writer. Read yesterday's blog if you have no clue what I'm talking about.

Taylor

I guess this turned out to be a real blog post. This campaign gives me
energy and takes away energy like nothing else in my life.

From left; Brodie, Kim, Gail, myself, Taylor talking after the "Share your story event", which I discussed in yesterday's post

Presenting at "Speak Out!"

Gail and I presenting Kilometres for Communication at "Speak Out"

http://calgary.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20110602/CGY_kilometres_communication_110602/20110602/?hub=CalgaryHome

Ok, that’s it for tonight. I mean it this time. Goodnight, and good morning to some of you.

-Skye

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6 thoughts on “Day 18 – Drumheller to Youngstown, AB – 128km

  1. Skye
    I am originally from Saskatchewan although I live in Nova Scotia now. My brother likes to tell people that he grew up in Sask, where you can watch your dog run away for days. And days. And days. 😀 I don’t think it’s quite that bad, we lived in the more northern portion of the Province where there are lots of trees and lakes.
    Keep on cycling!

  2. Thanks for sharing your journey so far with us all at Breaking the Ice on the weekend. It’s very inspring, and so important for all the “Cool Communicators” out there, and for society as a whole to become more aware of AAC users, to respect them and to learn how to communicate with them.
    I look forward to reading your blog each day.
    Tamara

  3. Skye, can’t begin to tell you how impressive, on so many levels, what you’re doing is. The physical challenge goes without saying, but it’s the committment to a cause, the sacrifice, and the passion, so eloquently shared in your daily postings, that almost leaves me speechless (and quite emotional). You are a remarkable young man and an inspiration to others. May the wind always be at your back! Cheers, Colin MacKellar

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