In the lack of better ideas, I will start the diary from adventures in the past. See, I might have been quite ill for the past two years, but I was told by my doctors that I wasn’t. In the end, I didn’t have much choice but to believe them, and live my life as I knew it. I tell you this, because as you will learn sometime later, it is a story that proves your mind is more powerful than you think. You can indeed imagine black is white, if you choose to do so.
As a young girl, I read all the books about the great explorers I could find at the local library. My favourite game was to ski and pull my red plastic toboggan on the river ice behind my home and pretend I was on an expedition to North Pole. On those days when snow was blowing horizontal at gale force, I enjoyed a cup of hot chocolate from my thermos sitting on my toboggan in the middle of the ice. Needless to say, I didn’t have many friends as a kid.
I’ve since given up the idea of North Pole (for the lack of money, not desire), but I have treasured the love for both bad weather and outdoors. So, 6 months after my initial “small operation” I was going nuts. I needed to go out, a lot further out than the garden that I had been tending all summer. Because of the scars and pains on my stomach, I couldn’t carry a back bag; I needed to be outdoors and have someone to carry my gear. Thus, I got an idea; I’ll go cycling, alone. It makes sense; I had had two very unsuccessful operations downstairs, was still suffering of those problems and I had not been cycling for years. Moreover, I had never done a proper solo trip. What would be a better way to start soloing than heading to barely populated islands when you’re not quite well yet?
I rented a bike, with pedal brakes and 7 gears. It had a pretty basket in the front and my husband picked me some flowers to decorate it with. I told you I’m more of a hippie than a prober adventurer. He dropped me off about 12 km from my first camping site (at somebody’s Airbnb backyard) and off I cycled. Crying my eyes off, I was terrified. Terrified of ticks, snakes, thunders.. cars.. getting lost and never to be found again. Why was I doing this to myself? What an earth was it that drove me to do things like this? I missed my husband’s safe company.
For about 5 pedal strokes. Then the familiar feeling of freedom filled me. Freedom of all everyday life – computers, money, hospital appointments, you name it. I think as a kid I embedded the joy of skiing alone to the Pole so deep, I can still reach the same high as soon as I depart. I smiled as I climbed the first uphill on the soft sandy cycle lane.