From the Book This is a story about chairs on front porches and smiles in gas stations, about looking America in the face and having it look back. It's about seeing states that were once nothing but colored squares on a map. It's about being unafraid to travel solo and let the folks out there know that you came alone and in peace; that you just dropped by to see what they had to offer. It's about bragging rights and strutting biker attitudes-some real and most imagined. It's about missing what we have and having what we miss. It's about every paradox in life. It's about being alone in a room full of friends and, later, being surrounded by voices 100 miles from the nearest human sound. It is about being afraid-for no other reason than fear exists on the edge of the unknown-no matter how close and familiar everything appears on the surface. It's about time; about having too much and doing too little or having too little and trying too much This is a story about the directions in which we run and what we find when we get there. It's about the past and the future and how they touch the present. It's about having a damn good time doing nothing but observing, listening to others and being grateful about the wonderful events that fall into the lives of others and spill over into yours. It's about living dreams that I didn't know I had because I was too busy to look. It's about being still in God's world and about God still being in ours. It's about not knowing when to get out of the rain or how I got into it in the first place. ABOUT THE AUTHOR Fred O'Brien was raised in Burlington, Vermont. In 1964, after graduating from High School, he joined the U.S. Navy to see the world and escape hissmall part of it. In 1968, he returned to Vermont, where he worked as a truck driver while attending night classes. He took his first full-time computer job that summer and in 1974 he moved to Houston, Texas, where he worked as a Systems Analyst for 30 years. In 1995, he returned to motorcycle riding after a 20-year hiatus from the road.