This, as I quickly realized, is the difficult part of things.
There are several “how” questions: how do I organize the ride itself, how do I make sure I can leave my home for two or two and a half months. However, for me the biggest “how” question is how do I pay for it.
This trip will be expensive. There’s lodging and food for 2½ months – not to mention the gear needed to make this trip possible. And any net proceeds will be donated to one or more charities aligned with the goals of raising awareness for organ transplantation, blindness prevention, and/or diabetes education. My initial rough budget puts the cost close to $20,000. Over half that amount is for hotels/motels rooms and food. Since Jeff is doing this in a sense as a guide for me because of my vision loss, I think that I should pay for his lodging and food. We won’t always be staying in hotels or motels. There are going to be nights we camp. But I want to limit those because at night outside I am for practical purposes, 100% blind. Even with a lantern or two it’s dangerous for me. Not to mention I like the idea of a room with a hot shower and a bed waiting for me at the end of each day’s ride.
I can’t afford to pay for this trip myself. Even though I’ve always worked and always had medical insurance, each year I have staggering amounts of uncovered medical costs that I am responsible for paying. I’m not complaining about the state of medical insurance here. I am just stating the facts. To be fair, if not for medical insurance and the vast amounts of money they have paid on my behalf, I would have, as they say in the Monty Python parrot skit, ceased to exist a long time ago.
But I have a story to tell and I think it’s a story that people will find interesting and in some cases, helpful and maybe motivational. I have survived and I daresay thrived against odds that have often been heavily against me. And with that in mind I intend to ask medical, pharmaceutical, and other corporations to provide me with grants or product donations to offset the costs. Hopefully, with their help and help from private donors who can fund me by clicking here, I will be able to take this once in a lifetime trip.
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This ride which for me is far more than a ride, cannot happen without your help and generosity. Please consider making whatever donation you can!
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