A week today I set off! Feeling excited, can’t wait to be on the road. As of today I think I have all the bits and bobs I need to set off.
However it’s been a recurring problem of mine to have equipment failing on me. I set off today to cycle to Edinburgh and back and felt something odd in my back wheel as I set off down my street. I look down to see the inner tube bursting through the rubber of the tyre:
(a couple of the splits, there were about half a dozen more)
So looks like these tyres won’t be coming with me. These were just my winter “knobblies” and am quite glad to revert back to my skinny slicks.
All my waterproofs seem to be springing leaks as well. Just replaced some gloves today and I’ve got a feeling my once excellent and indispensable waterproof socks have sprung a leak too.
Had a couple of “articles” in papers last week. My local paper printed a nice big article with a fair amount of spin and some slight miss-quoting. This led to about ten words in the Scottish Sun the following day, not really the kind of journalism I’m after really. On the same day though: this article was posted online ( http://www.gobicycletouring.info/2011/02/a-musical-ride-around-the-world/) . Now that’s the kind of journalism I do like.
Big thank you to relatives and friends who have sent me cards and money for the trip: John, Gillian, Audrey, Jack, Mary, Brian and Sue. That money will go a long way on the road, thank you very much.
Big thank you to all the well wishers and messages of support I’ve been receiving by email too.
This blog during the trip
After a very interesting blog post by the world bike touring godfather Alastair Humphreys, I’ve decided to hold back on writing long blog posts during my trip. I will save my words and my stories for when I’ve finished, focusing on music, photos and videos. These are more immediate and accessible whilst engaging the imagination. I won’t be telling you details about what I’m up to – it’s up the viewer to imagine how it is. Music is very subjective and can provoke different feelings in different people. I hope the combination of music and images/video will provide a more engaging and interactive experience for those who wish to follow my journey – and each person will interpret these in different ways. Then after I’ve finished you can read my story once it’s written up into something accessible and see if it matches your interpretation of it.
So the blog will be updated as will twitter/fb. Blog updates will contain links for newly uploaded music, photos and videos. Also occasional written asides but none pertaining to the trip. Twitter/fb will provide updates when I enter a new country/city but it will NOT let you know every time I get a puncture, have a hard day, see something quaint, something on my bike breaks or how many times I’m accosted by a local wondering why I’ve got a guitar strapped to my trailer.
It’s going to be quite an experience for me personally and I hope it will be a fun and entertaining experience for followers of the trip.
The final week
So for my last week at home I’ll be getting everything ready for departure day. I have my final vaccination tomorrow from the lovely Practice Nurse Alison. I’ll miss our monday sessions of preparing, joking about the extreme dangers and pain (plus the tuesday vaccination hangovers). Then it’s off to Edinburgh for a couple of days to see some friends. Thursday and Friday: packing. Then on saturday a few friends are coming around midday to see me off. Then at around 1pm on the 26th February I will head off on my own and begin this journey. I doubt I’ll get very far that day but it will be a start: a start to something I’ve been thinking about for the last 2 years. I try to imagine how this will feel. I remember when I finished my last exam for university and the overwhelming feelings I felt walking back to my flat. I wonder if it will be like that or if it will take a while to sink in. As per my blog intentions stated above you can wait 3-4 years to find out!! Maybe some of my first recordings for the trip will reflect those feelings.
Anyways, I’ve got another post lined up for when I leave which includes a hilarious hitch hiker’s guide to the galaxy reference that only those who know of my most recent employment activities will appreciate. One to look out for!!!