Back in da hood
And so, some 86 days and 2400 miles since setting off from Salford, I have finally swapped my saddle for a swivel chair and hung up my cycling shorts (well, not entirely - I still have to get about and it'll be a while before the tender spots heal... but enough of that!).
After Brithdir Mawr I continued up to Aberystwyth and the warm hospitality of the family of Hannah, a friend from the G8 bike ride. Great food, conversation, music, card games and a stunning sunset backdrop... beautiful!
The next day I cycled to the Centre for Alternative Technology in Machynlleth, one of the longest established eco centres in the country and probably the biggest tourist attraction in Wales. Well recommended to anyone who's never been... Bumped into a friend from Brithdir there so had a camping buddy for the night too.
Then came a two day mission from mid-Wales to Derbyshire to the Earth First! Gathering for four days of discussions, workshops and training sessions aimed at anyone wanting to take action to stop the destruction of the planet. I'm not bothered really, I just liked the vegan carrot cake! Seriously though, it was great to meet up with friends from the bike ride as well as meeting lots of new, and on the whole brilliantly inspiring, people. I did find myself having to hold back from getting involved with every worthy campaign I heard about, but there's a lot of things I can do as I get on with writing, from organised protests to personal lifestyle changes,and I'm excited about those too, as long as they don't start taking over my life!
It's been an amazing journey, completely different to how I'd imagined it but then it was always going to be. I've met a lot of wonderful people and been inspired in many unexpected ways. And now I have to try and shape it all into some sort of meaningful and entertaining experience for other people... when all I really want to do is plan the next ride!
Off to catch up with friends and family in Edinburgh, London and Hitchin for the next couple of weeks, and may happen to chance upon a certain arms fair while I'm down, but after that it's all about pens, desks, chairs, and keyboards... and the odd cup of tea/coffe/wine/bike lubricant.
I'm going to keep the blog going for now as I'd like to continue to document the project, though maybe more intermittently as there's also the thorny little problem of supporting myself while I do so... However, there'll be a website along shortly, and before long you're going to have to relinquish your computer entirely and come and see something live... Unless I come to you first!
Thanks to everyone for all your support whilst I've been away, from hosts to centres to those at home and abroad leaving messages of love and sympathy! You've been wicked. Keep checking the blog for news and updates, it'll be cool to get people's opinions about the direction of things as they go along...
Coming to a theatre near you soon...