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Familiar Roads

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Hard to believe we’re home.  After nine months and 15,000 miles between Alaska and Argentina, the three of us have reunited with family and friends in North Dakota.  Daily showers, home-cooked food, fast cars, and comfy clothes are just a few of the wonders of life that we are growing re-accustomed to.  Meanwhile, the inevitable question lingers over us: “What’s next?”  We have been sharing our story with local media and we are so thankful for the outpouring of support that we have received since stepping off the airplane from Buenos Aires.  To be honest, we’re all a little worn out and looking for a few days of time off with family.  Our sister’s graduation day was a special time for us to be home.

In time, we’ll announce our plans to tour the state of North Dakota and Minnesota by bicycle.  We have many speeches and presentations about our 15,000 mile journey to deliver this summer.  David will look forward to college this fall.  Nathan is hopeful for employment in music teaching.  I am preparing for Marine Corps Officer Candidate School.  Somehow all this bicycling doesn’t help with pull-ups.

After months of life by bicycle, perhaps the hardest thing about coming home is the speed of an airplane.  We saw landscapes drift by at the steady, measured pace of our Surly Trolls.  We crossed international borders and mountain ranges and deserts in a manner that allowed us to acclimate to the steady changes and regional differences of the Americas.  Our airplane brought us across the same distance in one redeye flight from Buenos Aires to Atlanta, and beyond to North Dakota.  Stepping off the plane in Fargo, ND, we couldn’t help but feel like we’d been hastily transported to a foreign country.  We noticed especially the new cars filling the streets and the enormous homes that were so unremarkable to us before traveling abroad.  There is much we’ll never take for granted again, now that we are finished.  We’ve been changed in profound ways by what we have experienced, and we look forward to sharing that with local communities in the months ahead.

Bicycles being packed; the process took us all day in Ushuaia.

New and old friends in Buenos Aires.

Our sister’s pickup came in handy to get Angus, Sam, and Goliath home safely.

Family photo; at this point we still hadn’t showered or changed in days.

The Berg family farm has produced some unbearably cute kittens since we left.

Marta is all grown up now.

Since leaving, our parents have erected what I call “the Marta shrine”.

After graduation day, tragically, Marta’s face is permanently frozen in this posture.

We really, really missed being home.

Kids love the old trampoline in the backyard.

The famous “toppling cake”; a group of men were so busy loading up on pulled pork they didn’t even notice when it fell over.

Vegetables!  Real, fresh, delicious vegetables!

Note the stares of incredulity; this was pulled-pork-sandwich-#5.

Fruit!  Real, fresh, delicious fruit salad!

Did we mention how much we like food?  These are called oreo balls.

We love you Mom.

Flower for Marta.

The Berg family does its part to sustain the greeting card industry.

Rain and cars make for a muddy, messy farmyard.

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13 Comments Post a comment
  1. Janet #

    What a great concluding post! Congratulations, Marta! It’s go good to see your family all together. :)

    May 21, 2012
  2. Great job guys! Thankful God gave you a safe trip and unforgettable memories. Hope you guys will have many more fun experiences like this in the future. We will be sharing your incredible journey with our readers.

    May 21, 2012
  3. Jim and Elizabeth Berg #

    We love these posts…although I wish you had not put the picture of the muddy yard in the album…it makes me look like a hobo farmer. The rain was ever so welcome for the crops though.

    Good to have you home… Dad

    May 21, 2012
  4. Janet #

    I like the picture of the muddy yard. Helps keep everything in perspective. :)

    May 21, 2012
  5. Floyd and Dorothy Storsved #

    It was great seeing you guys at breakfast last Thurs. So happy you are home and all is well…Thank you for the song, such good singers, too..Wish we could have you at our church to do one of your talks but I think that would be an impossibility..Wish you were going to be around and togather, then I think we could make that happen… Good luck in the future in what ever you decide to do..God Bless… Floyd and Dorothy

    May 21, 2012
  6. Welcome home and job well done! The web site, your postings and pics have been phenomenal! Beautifully done in every way! It was wonderful to see the family pic!! Thanks for sharing! What fun to be able to share your adventure with others! Thanks for the journey! Bless you and hi to your Mom and Dad and Grandparents! Diane (& Myron
    )

    May 21, 2012
  7. jb #

    We are so glad you’re back home, guys ! And safe ! Congrats’ ! Sure you’ll miss the road and your tent… Will you eat peanut butter again ?..

    Hope to see you again one day (come in France !!!)

    JB & Vanessa (from the Cassiar 37, up north in bear country… a looong time ago)

    May 22, 2012
  8. xcountrypearl #

    I followed your journey from up here in British Columbia. Great Trip. Amazing photos. Wished for more journal entries and am sad to see it all end. I did a thousand bicycle miles by myself and thought that was a lot! Great job guys. You’ll probably never have anything else in your life as tough, cold, sore, inspiring, bonding, to compare with those 15,000 miles.

    May 23, 2012
  9. Congrats and welcome home, Bound South. It has been great following along on the second half of your journey. You’ve shared some heartfelt stories and strong photography.

    May 24, 2012
  10. What an amazing and inspiring story! I have truly enjoyed following it and if you come to speak anywhere in Minneapolis, let me know! I would love to hear you guys! Great job on the blog and I’m sad that the journey is over as I’ve enjoyed it so much!

    May 24, 2012
  11. Bill #

    Thank you for enriching our lives by sharing your journey!

    May 26, 2012
  12. Your sister will forever treasure that such a monumental undertaking as this was so totally built around her special day. I am glad to see it all worked out so beautifully.

    May 27, 2012
  13. AJ #

    What a fun update on “what’s next” and a nice window into “real life” for those of us who only know you through this blog. Hopefully you’ll all keep sharing your adventures, if less frequently, as you embark on new ones

    May 27, 2012

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