Land of the long white cloud

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Italy on the descent of Croce Domini

I am sometimes asked if I see much whilst riding my bike. I find it quite incredulous that there could possibly be a perception that you don’t or can’t.

I am currently reading a book written by Juliana Buhring, one incredibly inspiring lady with an extraordinary life story.  Raised in the Children of God cult she broke away and after a major personal tragedy decided to ride a bike…around the world.

Juliana became the first woman to circumnavigate the world by bicycle in 2012.

She has a wonderful quote in her book ‘This road I ride’ :

On a bicycle you are inside the movie, an essential part of it. Completely reliant upon your environment, you observe and absorb every sensation around you. You feel every change in terrain, the texture of the road, the direction of the wind, every ascent and descent, the constant shifting weather. You smell every plant and flower, every rotting roadkill carcass. You hear every birdcall, every insect and animal. You take in the country, and the country takes in you. 

If you really want to experience the world, get on a bicycle’.

I consider myself very fortunate to have ridden in many countries, touring. I openly admit I work to earn enough $ to fund my passion. To date I have ridden in England (4 trips), France ( 3 times), Wales, Scotland, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, Lichtenstein, Italy, Spain and Singapore.

I will  admit that Juliana has provoked much thought and I do wonder if i could ride around the world? What an awesome thing to do!

Later this week we fly to Christchurch, New Zealand, then bus down to Twizel. From there we will complete the Alps to Ocean ride, on a mtb hire bike, on trails. The distances per day are quite low, but the scenery sounds awesome.

I then say farewell to Tony, and I fly to Auckland for a few days, doing some rides with Zwift friends before riding to Wellington. I was initially doing this 9 night ride solo but my very first cycling buddy Sue has been motivated to fly over and join me.

Sue took up cycling back in 2009 and we had numerous adventures together, culminating in the 149 km Otway Classic. One of our funnier training rides was our first 150 km ride from Launceston to Mole Creek and return.

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Sue and I post Otway Classic 149 km 2009

We did that ride with about 25 psi in our tyres…. not comprehending that we needed to open the tyre valve before pumping the tyres up…. oops… the guys at the local bike shop dined out on that one for a looonng time! Needless to say our knowledge has improved!

We will have a ball and create a whole bunch of new memories.

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Will Sue survive me? Climbing back into my bedroom at Lands End, having climbed out onto the roof for a better view of the Scilly Isles. Thank goodness she is a nurse!

I have a few other rides in conceptual planning stages as well as the BIG one locked in… TransAm 6500 km, 52 000 metres climbing.

I also have employed a cycling coach. Yes I know many will think silly, ‘at my age’ but in trying to find authentic Sharron the fact is I am doing too many kilometres per week. Andy Jackson is a world endurance champion. I like endurance riding so it makes sense to tap into his brain to ensure my training is more directed. This will mean less km per week but higher intensity.

After only a fortnight my legs are trash!

My goals are not racing based but touring based. My knee and body will last far longer in touring mode, with less risk of accidents and injury.

Touring is MY passion.

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My touring bike

My goal is to become the authentic Sharron and put myself at the top of my list. Too often in life we get caught up in doing what everyone else wants, expects, needs and you become a husk of authenticism. Before you know it, you are too old to achieve those goals!

I can! I will!

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3 thoughts on “Land of the long white cloud

  1. Fastmail

    Hi Sharron and Tony, Thank you for your update Sharron. I think it’s fantastic that you have this great goal to aim for. If you write a book or film your round the world cycle ride you’ll be able to live off the proceeds and finance further exploits. Go for it girl! Sue and I know New Zealand quite well and can assure you that you will find the Mackenzie country round Twizel to be stunning. We’ve driven round there loads. It’ll be epic cycling over the Southern Alps…(I’m not envious really!!!🤢) We have just booked to cycle 6 days from Passau in Germany to Vienna along the Danube Cycle Trail next September. This might seem very tame to you but is a good taster session for Sue. We’ll be doing up to 80k per day. We take this opportunity to wish you both a very Happy Christmas and an adventurous New Year when it arrives. God bless you both With love from Alan & Sue xx

    Sent from my iPad

    >

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  2. Such wonderful writing Sharron, thoroughly enjoy your words. Good luck and enjoy life to the fullest. We are off to Switzerland, Nice, Northern Italy and Hong Kong on Wednesday. Looking forward to a fresh start to 2018. Love you and take care honey xxx

    Sent from my Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) on the Telstra Mobile Network

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  3. Jim Yaxley

    You are amazing Sharron.We drove from the top to the bottom of NZ some years ago and enjoyed every day.You will find the scenery so varied and spectacular.Best wishes for a safe and enjoyable tour,Jim & Shirley.

    Like

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