2023 The Mid South as told by Alex Roszko
“I didn’t realize how much I needed this weekend to happen. Meeting new people, seeing old friends, and getting closer to them all was just unrivaled. @midsouthgravel prioritized the right things - building friendships, not status. Making connections, not dollars. Seeking adventure, not results. I’ve never taken so much away from an event.
A few favorite moments:
@dominiquepowers and I have covered several races together, but never in the same vehicle. So we’re always coordinating, “I’m here! They’re there! This is what this road looks like” etc. I had sent her a photo of my empty Starburst wrappers, mentioning how it was the only thing I’ve eaten all day (oops). A couple hours later she shows up to the singletrack with a hummus sandwich in her hands. I mean, c’mon!
Finally meeting @_joshuawstrong. Full stop. Watching his work and progression has been super inspiring and I’m happy to have another comrade in the media trenches. Stoked to see where Josh goes!
Seeing the love and vibes at the @chamoisbuttr Shake Out ride and getting to ride with everyone! I loved chatting with @melaninbasemiles and I’m so inspired by what @themahasheila and her team are building!
Watching the unrelenting energy of @unlearnpavement welcome every single person with a hug and genuine recognition of their achievement. Bobby had red hug stains on the back of his shirt from the rider’s dusty arms. He gave all of himself, making sure they knew they were loved and valued. Even the DFL (Dead Fucking Last) rider after 14 hours of riding.
My favorite quote, and one I must tell myself often, is “comparison is the thief of joy”. As a creative (this isn’t unique to creatives), I can easily rob myself of that joyous feeling, but looking at others’ work left me inspired instead of critical of myself. I was celebrating the work and creativity I was surrounded by without letting it damage my own. I think this is due to the overall atmosphere of the event. Love, happiness, tolerance, acceptance. All things I need to give myself more of.
We're all the same - we all think less of ourselves and more of others, but we're all people just tryna vibe and be friends.” - Alex Roszko
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