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16. Jan, 2013

Back in London, but not on our bikes

Back in London, but not on our bikes

We’ve been back in London for a while now, but our bikes have made less of an appearance around town. Before we left for South America, we both commuted to work and used our bikes for generally getting around, but since we returned we’ve been pedalling less and less. Why? (more…)

09. Nov, 2012

A short trip to the seaside: cycle touring in Norfolk

A short trip to the seaside: cycle touring in Norfolk

In October, with one week left before Paddy had to go back to work, we decided to take the bikes away to escape reality. With only a few days available and looking for some fun rather than a challenge we decided to head to Norfolk to explore a part of the UK neither of us knew.

Home to the Broads and hundreds of canal boats, Norfolk is famous for being flat. We had a great few days pedalling around the Queen’s backyard and hope to return for a longer tour when time allows. (more…)

16. Sep, 2012

Back on the bikes – a day trip along the Thames Cycle Path

Back on the bikes – a day trip along the Thames Cycle Path

London, Peckham – Greenwich – Dartford, 35 miles

After six weeks back in the UK, catching up with friends and family over countless meals we were keen to get back on the bikes for a bit of exercise. Having returned to work though, our time was limited, so we chose a local ride along the Thames Cycle Path and were pleased to discover a quiet route with plenty of interesting sights on route.

From our house in Peckham, south-east London, it was a short ride to the old, market town of Greenwich. We didn’t stop to explore the food stalls, but picked up the National Cycle Route 1 next to the impressively restored Cutty Stark. The only surviving tea clipper, when we left London in 2011 she was a burnt out shell after a fire, but now stands tall and proud again having been reopened earlier in 2012. (more…)

31. Jul, 2012

Going back to the start

Going back to the start

The taxi driver eyed me quizzically. We were heading towards Rio de Janeiro Airport for our flight home and he didn’t seem to believe my English/Portuguese account of our 14-month, cycle ride around South America. Suddenly, a look of recognition washed over his face as he said, ‘You were on TV’.

He wasn’t the only one to recognise us after our appearance on Brazilian national TV which showed us returning to the start point of our trip on Ipanema Beach. We were spotted on the metro and congratulated by a passing motorist in the centre of town, an odd feeling but an amusing three minutes of fame. (more…)

23. Jul, 2012

The end of the road

The end of the road

So here we are, quite literally at the end of the road for our cycle tour of South America. Not for the first time, we’re in a seedy, Brazilian hotel sat on a plastic mattress preparing to cook our tomato sauce and pasta supper. We’re one block back from the ferry terminal in Niteroi, the city on the opposite of the bay from Rio de Janeiro. Tomorrow morning we’ll take a boat across the water and then pedal 15km along cycle lanes to the point on Ipanema Beach where we started our adventure 14 months and 12 days ago.

My emotions are all over the place. I’d expected to be excited by the first sight of the city which holds such significance to us, but as we headed towards the coast this afternoon I held my breath at each curved mountain we saw, desperate for there not to be a recognisable monument perched on top. Of course, it finally appeared; a tiny, white figure, arms aloft in the city haze watching over the people below. (more…)