plastic 2
(plastic food!)

Imagine, you are in San Francisco, for the first time in your life. For those of you who don't know, its a large city, never ending buildings, cars and people at every single turn. You find yourself at Macworld in the city and you buy a new toy, a battery pack for your iPod so you will always have music with you on a trip you are on. This trip is not any ordinary trip. You are 3 thousand miles from your home, your life is in your one little car. Everything you brought along to survive. So after a few days in the city and a couple days exploring Macworld it comes to the last day of Macworld and you have to get over there before it closes because part of the battery that you bought is missing from the packaging. So you arrive at 4pm to find hundreds moving away from the conference center. Pushing through the crowd you fear the worst and wonder, it couldn't possible be closed yet, right? You go ahead and wander all the way to the entrance and notice a security guy standing at the door. Eye's wide and watchful. As you approach the door to the floor a big gloved hand goes up and you show him your entrance badge but he explains it is closed. You make up a lie and say you have left something in there that it is very important and you need to go grab it. "Sorry sir, there is absolutely no way you can enter." So you head back to the escalator and step on with the pack of other people and you feel totally defeated, of course this would happen. Of course. You would think something as simple as a clip for an iPod accessory would not have the ability to break someone down but today, this day, it just so happened that it can... hang on a second, let me take a step back, rewind.

This morning, after 3 great days in the city and a little over a week on the road you find yourself ready to leave the city and head for the land you came out here to see. It was the beginning of the rest of your life. As you leave the apartment you were staying at you walk down the street thinking of the amazing places you are going to see, you close your eyes, feel a breeze and imagine you are there atop the edge of a canyon in the middle of no where. The sky is wide and the landscape never ending. You open your eyes, and cross the street and as you gaze in the direction of your car, something is not quite right. Things are not as you left them. You walk to the other side of the vehicle and find that a rear window has been smashed clean out. You look to the ground to see pieces of it scattered all around and your heart sinks. Sinks down to your toes. You decide there is no reason to freak out or anything, what's done is done. You reach into the door and unlock the front door and set the belongings you have in the front seat. Walk back around to the other side and sit down into the front seat. Everything around you is a mess, everything has been tossed everywhere, your current life is there, beside you, tossed salad.

A deep breath and a moment later you step back out of your car to inspect things, the trunk is open, one window is no longer there and you start thinking of what to do next. You feel all sorts of things, betrayal from the open road for letting something like this happen, you wonder what kind of person did this, you picture a blurry figure in the night going through your things, and you feel overwhelmed by what the hell you are going to do now.

So now you are in my shoes. all of this crowded in your mind. The rest of my day has been spent sorting this mess out. Filing a police report, going through everything that was stolen, getting a new window in the car, you know, all of the obvious things. In between those things I have been wondering all sorts of things about human nature and imaging the person that would do this. I hope to myself that it was someone that will at least use some of the things that were stolen, which reminds me. I'm sure you are curious just what has gone missing. Here is a vague list of things:

My backpacking backpack which had my brand new tent inside, as well as my sleeping bag, sleeping mat, camping stove, an additional down blanket, stuff sacks and other little things. One of two bags of clothing which appeared to have been gone through and a new pair of pants which were insulated for cold weather, a pair of fancy fleece long underwear, 2 new long sleeve fleece shirts, a towel, a stick of deodorant, and another long sleeve shirt or two (pretty much all of my cold weather clothes for camping). A brown wooden box which was a gift was taken but not before all of its contents (shells and stones and items of sentimental value) were dumped onto the floor. A bag full of about 20 dollars worth of change for laundry and whatever else. A power strip along with a power converter which converted power from a cigarette lighter to your average power outlet (so I could use my laptop out on the road for photo management and whatnot). A small box containing misc. tech things like batteries, a cable or two, an M-Audio Trigger Finger Midi drum pad controller for making music while out on the road, a set of folding iPod speakers, and an iPod car charger along with a special cup holder that was used as an iPod mount. A couple of small green bags, one of which contained nothing but spices for cooking, and the other contained various audio cables, an ipod digital camera adapter, and a few other odds and ends of things. Then there is the fun part, my camera bag. Thankfully I had my 5d, my 35mm 1.4L lens, 3 of 4 2gb cards, and two batteries with me but... along with my camera bag (a great bag which was a gift to me recently) went a Canon 50mm 1.4 lens, a Canon 50mm 1.8 lens, a Canon 28-105mm 3.5-4.5 USM lens, a Sigma 80-300mm lens, a couple of lens filters, lens/camera cleaning equipment, an older Canon EOS film camera body, the manuel to the 5d, 2 battery chargers, misc cables, and also a pair of 200 dollar sennheiser HD 25 Headphones, which I really miss... There were also other odds and ends of things missing and things I probably haven't even realized are gone but thats the bulk of it. Fun, no?

So thankfully I had my Spire bag which had my laptop (two of them actually), cables, external photo hard drive, DS, and all sorts of other necessities, like chargers and ipods and notebooks, and whatever else.

So from here I will do what I can to rebuild some of my basic needs like warm clothing layers, sleeping bag, camera battery charger, and press on. These things happen in the world and it is things like this that make you question so much about life and humanity and the state of things in the world we live in today. Rather than sit and dwell the best thing I can do is to simply press on and just dive into the trip once again. It is going to take more than a broken window and a bunch of my stuff to break my spirit. I have worked to hard to long to let this get to me to much. I have a great bunch of friends and family that have my back in all of this and I have to thank them for helping to push me through. After all this, I still find that I really love this city. After driving back through it today I still find it to be a very welcoming place. somehow in a way. I can have some sympathy for those in the world that are at rock bottom and have to turn to these sorts of tricks to get by but only a little, im still pretty upset about this whole thing... So at any rate, I am picking up and moving on once again to the great and vast canyons of the american southwest. Wish me luck!

P.S - If you ever have your window smashed in the San Francisco area, I recommend the guys at US. Auto Glass Center ( ). They were super nice about it all and did a great job.

I cant help but feel grateful because of the support I have seen from people around me both strangers and family, friends and so from that I find myself making sure to treat others as nicely and gratefully as I can and I suggest you do the same, pass it on. Every bit helps in this world.

Till next time folks...

plastic 1
(what a way to start a day!)