Tomorrow, I’m back to being a cycling commuter; I can’t wait! For the first week and a bit of the academic year I’ve been getting a lift from my friend Jo, who also lives in Reading. It’s been nice having someone with whom I can chew over the day, but, no disrespect to Jo (she is excellent company), I quite like chewing over the day with myself…
It’s also Reggie’s return to the day job. Here he is waiting for the off in my hallway laden no longer with tent and sleeping bag but with the more prosaic shirt, trousers and Filofax that I need for work. He will have to forget his exotic adventures for a while and get back into the groove of plying the path between Reading and Henley-on-Thames. There is a glimmer of hope for him however; reorganising this website, I have included a ‘next adventure’ tab just up there at the top of the page. It’s very empty at the moment; any suggestions?
I have enjoyed reading your travel diary, thank you.
As for suggestions for future trips I have 3 nominations for your consideration,
Ride the Camino to Santiago de Compostela Catch the ferry to Santander, drive inland to Burgos and Leon and Sarria (say hello for me ) follow the Camino, returning via the coastal road, (Do try the E70) its a pleasant journey on quite roads, though I am not a devout man, I did enjoy the architecture, and history.
Ferry to Santandare and head up the coast of France, a gentle journey filled with variety, good food and wine, and excellent camp sites.
Finally, for real distraction on your daily commute I would suggest you visit the American web site, Adventure Cycling Association, they detail various US cycle routes in and across the US (38,000 plus miles total!)
They also can supply maps of the routes ranging in distance from 200 miles (Utah Cliffs loop) to the Transamerica route (4253 miles) plus comments from their member cyclists.
All great coffee cup dreams!
Yes, the Camino is worth considering; I lack the spiritual motivation but it is useful to piggyback upon an ancient pilgrimage route (as I did to some extent in Northern Italy with the Via Francigena and Eurovelo 5 being almost the same) and there is a sense of “worthyness” to the whole thing.
I want to take that ferry to Santander one day; probably the nearest I will ever get to crusing before I retire! I have relatives who live in southern Spain so thoughts of heading south across the plain of Spain to Malaga is an idea; heading north through France is equally tempting. I used to live in Saumur and then Tours in the Loire Valley so know the area pretty well. It would be a trip of memories.
The USA? I am a bit of a Europhile (it comes with being a languages teacher I’m afraid), but “USA” has “epic” writen all over it. Not yet discounted.
Thanks for the tips!
Yep, heres one well worth a go. http://www.northsea-cycle.com/
All you have to do is another trip down to Deal, hop over to Calais, turn left and keep going…Belgium…Netherlands…denmark..sweden…norway up to Bergen then hop over to the shetlands and a mere saunter down the east coast and back to reading. Got three months to spare?
Yes, this is one I have indeed thought about. It is Eurovelo 1 and I passed the signs (albeit the British ones – the National Cycle Network calls the East Coast route number 1 and I suppose they must be the same thing) as I cycled through Kent and even bumped into a couple of Dutch people in Deal who were setting off north with the aim of completing the circle. A chap called Bernie Friend wrote a book called Cycling Back to Happiness about his attempts to cycle route 1; I have mentioned it on here before and he has even been in contact. He was a novice cyclist at the time although the bug clearly bite as he has more recently cycled from John O’Groats to Lans End (or the other way round, I forget). Three months? No. Although I suppose if you miss out the UK bit you might be able to squeeze it into 6-8 weeks heading south from Bergen…. It’s definitely in the running! (Or cycling!!)
An empty cup is easier to fill than a full one.