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David Goodrich is a retired climate scientist who likes to ride bikes. A couple of months after retirement in 2011, he rode from Delaware to Oregon. Since then, he’s ridden down the Appalachians and on the Way of St. James in Spain. Tales of the road turn into stories.


When I retired a couple of years ago, it occurred to me that what I wanted to do was read and write and ride. The biggest ride was right after retirement, when I got on the bike in my driveway and ended up on the Oregon coast three months later. The Potomac Review story “Small Hours on the High Plains” comes from the Kansas stretch of the ride.  Setting is a big part of my stories, both fiction and non-fiction. I encounter kind and remarkable people along the way in circumstances beyond my powers of imagination, so I try to weave their stories together. I’ve been lucky to have access to the Writer’s Center in Bethesda and their very talented group of workshop leaders. Their critiques help keep me on track.

My muse lives on the road, and come springtime I’ll be back out. For twenty years or so, I’ve been fascinated by the Ghost Dance, the tribal religious revival of the 1890’s, culminating in the tragedy of Wounded Knee. Next spring I plan to ride across South Dakota, through the Black Hills and to the edge of the Badlands. I can’t believe there isn’t a story there.

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