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Published: April 12th 2011
After 10 months & 32771 miles my roadtrip through the America's has come to an end & its time to return to sunny London. Surprisingly, despite a few close calls along the way I'm still in one piece.
Once again the big wide world has proven itself to be full of kind, generous & friendly people country after country, despite what you read in the news. Trust me, the good far outweigh the bad in this world.
I do realise I've been so very, very, very, lucky & not just because I've been fortunate enough to get on the bike & go for which I owe many people a great deal, but because as ever, I've met truly exceptional people along the way.
And that is what I'll miss most now I'm retiring from this life, the opportunity to mix with such an eclectic bunch of people on such a regular basis who make me laugh, teach & intrigue me day after day after day.
The only negative being I was more financially solvent when I was 11 then I am now.
Was it worth it? If you've read my previous entries you'll already know the
answer to that.
People have asked for favourites, which is tricky as that will change as my perspective does with time, but my favourite country was without doubt America. Yes I realise it's an uncool choice but so be it. American's proved themselves time & again to be amongst the friendliest, kindest & most generous people on the planet & the country is as beautiful as the people I met there.
In joint second comes Mexico & Colombia, each very different & neither deserve the reputation they have. If you get the chance, go.
Low point; I can only think of one in 10 months on the road. Feeling utterly demoralised in Bolivia after falling off the bike & watching it slide down the road for the umpteenth time realising I had miles & miles & miles & miles including the infamous 'Death Road' still to do to get back to La Paz. Oddly, I don't class hitting a bus a couple of days prior as a low point. I'm clearly very easily pleased.
On our way north to Buenos Aires from the bottom up, Patrick & I got see Killer Whales hunt seals by charging
up on to the beach & snatching one. It only happens very rarely on one beach on earth at a specific time of the year on specific tides & we were told by the Park Ranger, the guidebook & those that had been & seen nothing we'd have to be exceptionally lucky. Which is possibly why Patrick & I had to wait for a full 10 minutes after pulling up on the bikes see Killer Whales crashing on to the beach and snatching seals for breakfast. A good example of the joys of life on the road & just one of the thousands of memories that will keep me smiling for many years to come.
A big thank you to those without whom I simply wouldn't have made it this far. Family & friends at home specifically Elaine for not hurting me too badly when I came up with the idea & Danny & Brenda as without them I'd never have turned a wheel. THANK YOU!!! Also my mum for not setting the bike on fire prior to departure, I'm 100% sure it crossed her mind.
Those I rode with, those who graciously put me up & put
up with me thank you for turning my trip into the adventure it was. Those who sent emails from home & all over the world thank you for keeping me in mind & letting me know what you've been getting up to.
You all have a part in the 32771 miles & you can't comprehend just how very grateful I am.
Best wishes to those on the road still living the dream, ride safe my friends & to those in London, I'll have a bourbon & coke.
I'll say goodbye & sign off with yet another thank you & a travel quote I love.
'It is not down in any map; true places never are'. Herman Melville.
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