How many of you know about Warmshowers? Wait, no, it’s not what you think, you perv. Warmshowers is an “internet based hospitality exchange for touring cyclists. People who are willing to host touring cyclists sign up and provide their contact information, and may occasionally have someone stay with them and share great stories and a drink.” (And sometimes, a warm shower!) Think of it as couchsurfing for cyclotourists.
I’ve been a member of Warmshowers for four years, and have used the hospitality network dozens of times. But I had never lived somewhere that I was able to host touring cyclists…until now.
And I just ended up hosting my first touring cyclist on Monday and Tuesday of this week. His name is Joe and he’s from Nashville. He’s at the end of a coast-to-coast tour from Virginia that used the Lewis and Clark routing since Iowa. He’s been having a good time and all (though the headwinds through the Columbia Gorge had done a good job of pushing him back) and is now heading out to the Pacific Coast to finish his journey.
It was nice to finally get a chance to repay the Warmshowers community, and also, it was nice to be able to actually host someone. I had done my share of hosting friends and guests in Portland since moving here in 2001, but it has been in inconsistent waves: a lot in the first year, a few here and there. The last time I hosted someone was when I lived on NE Glisan in 2008. Since moving from there, I have lived mostly in places that hosting anyone wasn’t feasible. But my house in Woodlawn has the space, so I’ve set myself as “Available to Host” on Warmshowers.
Hopefully I’ll be getting more people coming through soon. It’s always fun hearing touring stories.