I partly wished my first blog would be some grandiose account of me battling a rabid dog or finding some supposedly extinct mammal in the middle of the Asia Steppes. The reality is rather more mundane, yet there is still something surreal about something you have wanted to do for nearly two years coming to fruition.
The original plan was to cycle unsupported from Hong Kong to London, as we later discovered Humphrey Wilson, a fellow alumni of Radley who has kindly offered his advice on several occasions, did successfully. However, our time limitations and the projects audacity halted it, condemning the trip to another example of ‘all talk, no action’ as I shall politely put it. Instead we thought searching for Borat in Central Asia and missile silos in Iran would prove just as exciting as we attempt cycle the Silk Road from Beijing to Tehran. In future blogs I hope to write much more about this historic relic which has a significance that spans just as far as the road itself.
We do this in aid of the small but brilliant charity A Child Unheard. In September 2015, Will, I and other friends headed off to Africa to work with a community in Ayenyah, Ghana where ACU is planning to establish its second learning centre. It was both a joy to spend time there and it is now all too clear to us what substantial benefits supporting this charity would have for the children who have lost their families and homes, are battling physical and sexual abuse at home and those with the simple but pure goal of expanding their horizons beyond the 20 mile sphere which many are harnessed to.
It is partly this reason that motivates us, despite leaving in May, to have started training in October 2015. We are quickly getting used to cycling in the rain and are becoming all too familiar with spinning bikes. Generous insurance companies, touring bikes and flights have all been acquired and now we can swivel our focus towards fundraising for A Child Unheard. It will all be worth it come May when we head off to Beijing to cycle across some of the least visited regions on earth.