While we were watching the locals dance on Isla Cozumel I realized that exactly a year ago we had started out in Prudhoe Bay, Alaska, more than 10,000km/6250mi North-West of here. One of the main paradoxes of time showed itself, as it seemed light-years away, while it also felt like we only started yesterday.
We saw glaciers, deserts, giant trees, volcanoes, canyons, ancient cities & pacific waves, cycled past bears, foxes, wolves, eagles, deer, elephant seals, snakes and lizards, while being eaten by mosquitoes and ants.
We met old friends again and made countless new ones. We have been inspired and inspired others in return. We have seen poverty and wealth and experienced the kindness of people, irrespective of nationality, income, colour, religious or sexual preference.
We switched from laughing to crying and back hundreds of times, screaming of happiness and cursing each other and our circumstances, often on the same day. We roughly planned our route before leaving, but all the best experiences were encountered without warning or preparation.
We have been part of a Native potlatch, played with a fox, camped in the desert, hugged trees, won our dinner in las Vegas, climbed mountains and sailed between dolphins. Meanwhile, thanks to the wonder called Internet I worked in a hundred different rooms in this giant office called Earth.
Our trusty Santos bikes have taken us all the way without problems. Even though we have been rained and hailed upon, blown off the road by side winds, camped in the snow and the freezing cold and cycled in 45+ degrees Celsius/113F, overheating at night. We cycled 160km on one day while I could not walk from pain a few months before, ready to quit. We have climbed the equivalent height of Mount Everest 10 times, many times pushing the bikes while doing it.
We have been alive, a full year, which is more than many people have been in their life. Oh, and we probably burned less than 3 gallons of fuel and likely spent less than USD $5000 in the process.
This is a huge amount of money for most of the world’s less fortunate population, but often blown away in mere weeks, days or even minutes by others on short-term rewards.
Our experiences have been more luxurious than any car-upgrade, more rewarding than any grand bottle of wine, and definitely longer lasting than any ounce of substance sniffed up the nose that might have cost the same.
The only problem is that life is even more addictive than all of these…
Thanks for joining us on our journey. Thank you for supporting us, helping us out where needed in person and in mind, urging us to write more, asking where and how we are, commenting on the site and writing us your emails, letting us know how you are. Thank you for dusting off your bicycle and making a difference. Thank you for hosting us and other travellers, it means so much more than a place to sleep or eat.
You are special and we feel thankful for having had the opportunity to share a tiny part of your life and for the way you are now forever part of ours.
As said, it feels we only have just begun…