Peter Pan once said “Second star to the left and straight on till morning.” Its the second part of that sentence that means so much to me, “straight on till morning”. Throughout my life I have found myself on many an adventure. Some good, some less good. All of them have been learning experiences of great value in my life story. One of my most important lessons ever I learned whilst cycling in Barcelona, Spain. This is where dear old Peter Pan comes in, in Dutch we say “Als maar recht door” which loosely translates to just keep going forward, or “straight on till morning” . This simple lesson applies to every thing in our lives. Just keep moving forward, als maar recht door, and eventually, you will get to your destination. Life is, afterall, about the journey and not the destination. So keep moving forward, als maar recht door, and enjoy the view along the way. Continue reading
In the last few weeks we have been getting to know each other. If you have been reading along you know that I am an American Expat in Europe. 13 years ago I hopped on a plane with a one way ticket, 50$,two suitcases and I never looked back. Which of course is only partially true, I look back every day and wonder if I could have done things differently. Maybe I could have made things easier for myself. Someone once said “If life is easy, you’re doing it wrong.” I guess that means I am doing it right. Continue reading
When I chose to stand upon my own two feet four long years ago, I bought myself a bicycle. You all know that much. You also know I’ve been setting small goals for myself recently and knocking them out of the park one by one each day. The thing is, we often only talk about our achievements, not our failures. Yet each un-reached goal has more positive value than we are willing to see. Today, I want to talk to you about a goal I set for myself, failed to achieve and all the wondrous knowledge and experience that failed goal brought me; about how failure is often one of our most important unnoticed successes. Continue reading
It was 2012 when I started cycling. It started after I had left my husband and I needed to get to and from work. I do no drive, I had no car, and a very limited budget for things like
the bus. Rather than make a problem out of it, I just started cycling to work, 40 km a day on a rickety old “moederfiets” ( a ‘mothers bike’ is a bike with child seat on the back, basket on the front, and grocery bags under the backseat) It was not a nice bike ride, the bike was heavy and uncomfortable, that being said I believe in working with what you have. The early morning sun rides were stunning. The sun rising up over the misty pastures.I began to realize what cycling did for my mind, my body and my soul. The thing about my divorce was that it left me with the most important thing, my child, the rest of it, money, things, housing was gone. This meant my budget was low, but I had a great deal of free time in the weeks my daughter was with her father. What was I to do with all that time. Continue reading
It wasn’t as difficult as one would think. It wasn’t even the goal I had in mind on that first day in April when I picked up my new to me 2nd hand bicycle. No, that day I just needed to go pick up some shoes from a town 35km away. That is how it started for me. That’s what made it work, it wasn’t me telling myself I needed to exercise more, it wasn’t me telling myself I needed to get outside more. It was pure utilitarian, I needed to get from point A to point B and the easiest way was with my bicycle. So that is exactly what I did, and 3 weeks in I realized just how many kilometers I had been making and I thought to myself, wouldn’t it be cool if I could cycle 1000km in 4 weeks, I only needed another 250km at that moment in time. So that’s what I did, cycled. Continue reading
I headed out today on my bike to get 40km in towards my 1000km goal. I wanted to take some pictures of some of the beautiful places here, truth be told, it was cold and wet. It’s been raining since yesterday but it feels like forever already! The lighting wasn’t conducive to pretty pictures and I just wasn’t feeling it. That being said, I managed 35.5km. In the rain on wet roads I’m much slower. I can feel that I worry about falling. I did’t fall, and I covered ground. Tomorrow I get another shot at working on my goal. Only 167km to go! It actually feels really good to say that, and to know that 167km’s in 3 days is really, really easy to achieve. I have decided that when I reach 1000km in 4 weeks I will treat myself to a day at the sauna, for now tho, a hot shower and a nice cup of tea sound like a good idea before sleep. Untill next time.
I read somewhere, it’s not how much you post on your blog, it’s the quality of what you write. So Ive taken the last week to work on a piece about the extraordinary World War 2 history of the place I live in. I’ve been cycling around and taking fotos and stories from the locals. Stay tuned and this week I will play your heart strings and help remind you to cherish every moment because life is fleeting.
Plus: By this coming Friday, 27th of May, I intend to have cycled 1000km (600miles) in 4 weeks time on my bicycle. I have 218km left to cycle in the next 5 days!
Untill next time!
I don’t always go places. Sometimes I just get on my bike and go for a ride. Just to get the body moving, the blood flowing. I struggle with anxiety and depression due to trauma, so the movement is so important for me. On the days when I don’t cycle, it can be difficult to even get up off the sofa. I do not know if you know anyone who has anxiety, or maybe sometimes you yourself know that feeling in the pit of your stomach that is just the nothing. It’s like being dead already, but not. I am alive, I know I am alive, yet there is nothing, not even emptiness. That is depression and there are days I think it is going to win, and I will give in to the deep dark nothing and wither away like old dead brown leaves in the winter wind. Continue reading
This year the start of the Giro was in Apeldoorn, the Netherlands. ( As we journey here together you will learn more about my bicycle racing adventures. ) The day before the start a friend of mine asked me if I wanted to bike the roughly 100km round trip to see the start. I, of course, said YES! Continue reading