Our planned trip to Japan was cancelled when I broke my collarbone in March last year, and what with follow-up surgery in November, weddings, renovations, and funerals, there hasn’t been as much bike touring lately as we’d have liked. Que sera. This hasn’t meant we can’t dream and plan, though.
Our Northern Europe plan continues to evolve, though departure date is delayed due to renovation issues. In the meantime, it’s fun to follow the travels of others. Sometimes this is part of the necessary research for a specific future trip, and sometimes it’s simple self-indulgence.
Many travellers keep blogs these days, and Crazy Guy on a Bike is one of the original collector sites for these. I’ve found two blogs here that I’m particularly enjoying. I’ve bookmarked these and watch for updates.
One is Heading East to the Caspian and Beyond by a couple of English retirees of our vintage, who are following a route similar to the one we travelled in 2009, though in the opposite direction. Starting from England, they rode south through France to the Mediterranean, then island-hopped eastward toward Turkey. We carefully considered this route for re-entering Europe in late 2009 – though we eventually chose a different option. Pauline and Hugh are now braving the Anatolian plateau in winter. Their blog includes thoughtful observations, as well as interesting historical details for the ancient sites they visit.
I’m also following Life is like a Box of Chocolates. It chronicles the journey of a family of four from England, who began their journey in Mexico last fall, and who recently sailed from Panama to Cartagena, sensibly bypassing the Darrien Gap. They’ve currently resumed cycling in Colombia, a country which is giving them a warm welcome. The family includes parents Steve and Pippa, and lads Henry and Charlie who were twelve and nine at the start of their journey. Sometimes the boys write the blog posts, and each family member offers reflections on a country after they’ve left it. The boys go off and play football (soccer) with the local lads in villages the family stays in. They’ve improved their Spanish to the point where they’ve now taken on the task of finding accommodation and negotiating its price –a task that was at first their mother’s. What a wonderful education!
Stay tuned for our own travels to resume in a few months.