On Friday 28th January, we both sat alone at
different points in the day to write a short piece about how we are
feeling at this point in time.....
With only four days to go before our departure
date it is hard for me to reflect on how I am feeling. Every day for
the last two years has been geared towards this moment. Every time we
had a craving to go to the pub we stopped ourselves and asked if we
really 'need' that pint or would we prefer to use the £2.40 to
provide a day's food in India. It has required a lot of will power to
resist daily temptations and remain focused on the trip.
We both worked full time, often into the wee
hours of the morning raising the funds for this expedition. I'll never
forget cycling home at 2am the week before Christmas when we had heavy
snow. It was quite scary cycling home eight miles along those icy roads.
Everyone at work couldn't believe I had the energy to ride home after
an exhausting nine-hour shift. I always wondered where that last little
bit of energy came from. I guess it felt like an investment into the
expedition, as though the chilly rides in the lonely dead of the night
were helping build up my physical and (more importantly) my mental strength.
We have been very blessed by the amount of companies
who have come on board to supply vital equipment for the project. However
it is our own hard-earned savings that will get us through the next
eighteen months. Our transport costs are dead cheap and sleeping in
our tent most nights will keep our accommodation costs very low. All
we will really need to spend money on is food, visas and communication
costs to family and editors back home.
I am really looking forward to being on the road.
We have been very office-bound over the last month. Our contracts at
work came to an end just after the new millennium rolled around, as
we needed a solid month to get everything sorted. January has flown
by. After a quick banana smoothie every morning it is straight to work
at the desk and on the phone. I am sick of talking about it now. I just
want to get on with it......
I was born in London and grew up near the south
coast in Wickham, Hamsphire. The biggest change in my life came about
when the Government decided to go ahead with an incredibly destructive
road scheme at Twyford Down, near Winchester.
I have always been interested in environmental
issues, and when I first saw the protesters as I passed through the
area in my car it was inevitable that I would end up spending a few
days at the Down. It was a point that was to change my life
The following few years were the most hectic,
chaotic and incredible of my life. I worked all over the country on
a number of environmental and social justice projects, and met some
amazing, inspiring people.
But watching the news coverage of campaigns I
was working on I grew increasingly frustrated. Coming home from a protest
I gradually realised that the images I saw on the evening news bore
no relation to what had actually happened. I resolved to do something
about it, and bought a video camera.
The next few years were spent working with Conscious
Cinema in Brighton and Undercurrents in Oxford, learning how to edit
and produce films on a wide range of issues. It was while I was working
with Undercurrents that I met fellow film-maker Lowanna.
I have wanted to travel for a long time, but
have spent too much time reading up on the environmental effects of
air travel to actually enjoy doing it! So when Lowanna suggested cycling
back to her home in Oz I knew it was the right thing to do. Once in
Oz I would like to spend some time learning about the land and people.
I look forward to exploring South and North America from the saddle
on the way back!