BKs Gap Year
Racing for Mizzou

A few days ago I went to a meeting for the Mizzou Cycling team. I had randomly met a few of the guys last semester and the more I talked to them about it, the more I wanted to join. After going to the meeting I knew that this was something I had to do. 

The team travels to other states to race bikes against other schools. Fall is mountain biking, winter is cyclocross and spring is tack/road. I will be racing mountain bikes and cyclocross so I won’t start till next school year.

As most of you know, I am addicted to cycling, to say the least… This should be a fantastic way to meet others with the same passions as me as well as a great way to stay fit. Stay tuned for race reports next semester!  

Stuck

I learned a lot in the past year. One thing that seemed to keep coming up no matter where I was in the the world, was that people in other countries would do anything to come to America for school. This gave me so much motivation to come back to the states and take full advantage of what I had for education. Now, being back in the ‘system’ for a little bit I am finding that I really don’t like sitting in a chair while someone talks at me for an hour. Only to be tested on the information a few weeks later. There is no way I can learn like this. I need to be out in the world doing hands on things. What makes me most sad is that I feel like I am wasting a spot. I feel like there are so many other people who would love to be at this University, sitting in the seats that I sit in everyday. I know that I need to push on and get through it but there has to be a more enjoyable way to do this.

Is anyone still reading this?

So I’ve been out of Gap Year for about five months and I’m about one month into my freshman year at the University of Missouri, Columbia. I’m a little older, my dreads are a little longer and I am still missing Rwanda big time. Why am I writing this post? Im not exactly sure, I guess I just want to see if there is anybody out there. If so, contact me somehow and Ill continue with my college experiences…

This is my friend B-Jon. We have worked together at ICM for the past 6 weeks. While in the Philippines I had some trouble really connecting with the people here on a deeper level. Sure they are all very nice people but all of my relationships with them seemed to be on a very surface level, except for B-Jon. We were quickly connected but our similar passions for out door extreme sports and guitar playing. We would talk for hours about guitars, musicians, what types of guitars each musician played, styles of music and other similar topics. B-Jon and I hung out outside of work a few times too. He let me sit in on his bands practice one night and I was even going to play bass at one of his shows but there was a little miss communication as to where the show was at. We also went to a ‘fan boat race’ on Easter (after church of course). After the race we swam in the ocean and went shelling for food! B-Jon also took me on my first motorcycle ride, man was that fun! He taught me a lot over the course of my stay but what I learned from B-Jon that I appreciate most is how much one positive person can totally change the experience. I am going to miss this dude. 

This is my friend B-Jon. We have worked together at ICM for the past 6 weeks. While in the Philippines I had some trouble really connecting with the people here on a deeper level. Sure they are all very nice people but all of my relationships with them seemed to be on a very surface level, except for B-Jon. We were quickly connected but our similar passions for out door extreme sports and guitar playing. We would talk for hours about guitars, musicians, what types of guitars each musician played, styles of music and other similar topics. B-Jon and I hung out outside of work a few times too. He let me sit in on his bands practice one night and I was even going to play bass at one of his shows but there was a little miss communication as to where the show was at. We also went to a ‘fan boat race’ on Easter (after church of course). After the race we swam in the ocean and went shelling for food! B-Jon also took me on my first motorcycle ride, man was that fun! He taught me a lot over the course of my stay but what I learned from B-Jon that I appreciate most is how much one positive person can totally change the experience. I am going to miss this dude. 

Your Turn

Fridge full of food, body is the same.

So many out there suffering, some not even knowing their own name.

I sleep on a couch and complain that it is too small.

They sleep on dirt floors without the simple protection of a wall.

I am mad because the internet is not on.

They wake up alone wondering where their mother has gone.

I have now been around the world, I am now more aware.

But with that new knowledge comes a responsibility for those surviving out there.

As you read this I hope your eyes have been opened too.

Now get up, get out and see what all you can do!

A few days ago I built a few raised garden beds and planted a mini lettuce garden. The soil I used is formed from a rich compost mix using no chemicals making it 100% organic. 

A few days ago I built a few raised garden beds and planted a mini lettuce garden. The soil I used is formed from a rich compost mix using no chemicals making it 100% organic. 

Message to Pergamum

In Turkey each of us read the passage in Revelation that had to do with the site that we were at. My scripture was Revelation 2:12-17 and it was a message to Pergamum. I read the versus in a big auditorium which was cool. The site had an interesting tunnel that sick people would walk thru while a pastor would walk on the land above you reciting bible versus. The tunnel took us about two minutes to walk but we were told that it took them about two hours due to there slow pace. Next we saw a place where people would sleep in salt water tanks and also have different fragrances burning. These scents would help them dream. Then when they woke up someone would tell them what their dreams mean. It would have been cool to see this happen. This site was full of old stone ruins very similar to the other sites we visited. Its amazing that the structures can last so long. It makes the land that I call home seem so young.

Transition

Africa time. Something I miss more and more everyday that we’re not in Africa. For the past two months or so I was getting very use to doing maybe two things, tops, a day. And that was considered to be a full day in Rwanda. We are now in Turkey, which is so awesome. But along with being in another continent we now do about nine or ten things a day. This is very draining after being in Africa for so long. I think the part that scares me the most about it though is that a tourist day in Turkey is still not as busy as a normal day in the States. May should be an interesting month of re-entry. 

The mountain wins again

This is still a sensitive subject so I am going to be brief…

I did not make it to the very top of Kilimanjaro. However I did make it to Stellas Point which is still above 18,000 ft so for that I am happy. But far from satisfied. I’ll be back Kili. I don’t know where I’ll find the money or time but I’ll be back.

Hospital

About a week ago I woke up with a small bump on my left shine. At the time I didn’t think much of it assuming that it was just a bug bite of some sort. As the week went on it continued to get more and more red everyday along with slight growth. The skin around the bump became poofy and a hard dark spot formed in the center of the lump. At about four days the area was very tender and was very tight making it slightly uncomfortable when I would walk but it still wasn’t a big deal. Today was one of the last days to get some decent medical attention so Tamara thought that it would be a good idea for me to get the spot checked out at least.

We arrived at the hospital and paid $1.50 to see the first doctor. He simply took my temperature (no fever), weight, blood pressure (low), and wrote down my information. Already I could tell that the language barrier would make this a very interesting experience. He then took me across the campus to another doctor where, sense I am white, got right in to see him. This was uncomfortable sense there was a small line outside the door. We quickly learned that this doctor had only been at this hospital for a week. He then took a few seconds to look at my leg and told me that there is nothing wrong. Surprised by this answer but not too worried about it we began to say goodbye and thank you when another doctor came in. This man took a look at the bump and stated that it is an infected spot and would need to be drained, dressed and that I would need to be on some medicine for a few weeks. I was glad that we received the second opinion. 

Our next stop was back on the other side of the campus at the surgery department. As we waited a white french doctor asked us if we needed any help and we explained our current situation and showed him the leg. His response was quick and in a very serious voice… “Do not drain that because it will get even more infected here.” After this comment he turned around and walked off without saying anything else. Just after that the surgeon appeared to asses the situation. With an examination he stated one of the most confusing things possible…”It is not infected so we will not drain it. But it is infected.” He too turned around and walked off. 

This entire time we had another doctor escorting us from spot to spot. We then followed him to the pharmacy where we tried to fill my prescription. I needed to get two types of medication but of course this place was out of one. So we paid for the medicine that they did have which came out to be $.50. We knew that there was another pharmacy in town so that was our next stop. Fortunately they had the second medication bringing the grand total of money spent on our trip to the hospital to under $5.00. 

So we still don’t know exactly whats wrong but we are waiting to hear from a doctor back in the states if this is medicine that might actually help me or if I should try to get something else. 

I don’t think that the bump is too big of a deal but the experience was awesome!!!!!