Monday, 5 October 2009

On what comes next

This entry is adapted from an e-mail I sent to Margo.

As I recover from and mull over my last trip, I am thinking about what will be my next bicycle tour. It is all very much in the future, but to paraphrase Cunard "Planning to get there is half the fun." Actually, I could have said "Cycling there is most of the fun" but then the paraphrase wouldn't have worked so well.

As you may remember, my working plan for 2010 had been to bicycle from York to Campbeltown in June. The fact that my only sister may be getting married in Newfoundland at that time rather put a spanner in the spokes of that plan as I was hoping to be in Scotland near the solstice, but not too deep into high season. The alternative of cycling in Newf' involves slightly tricky timing as the distance between Deer Lake and St-Johns is something like 650 km (w/o St-Pierre et Miquelon) which according to my cycle touring planning rule of thumb works out to about 1.3 weeks. That is a tricky length of time, made all the more complex by the fact that Alice's very tentative date is a Thursday.

The second back up plan would be to bike from Calgary to Winnipeg. While this would be fun and lend itself to camping, I think I want something less distance oriented and a little more touristy for my next jaunt. (The Prairies tend towards "Bring me that horizon moments" which are good, but end up with relatively little in the way of memories.) ;-) Incidentally, by "touristy" I mean things like museums, castles, cathedrals, etc.

Consequently, the next back-up plan would biking from Bordeaux to Northern France, via the coast. Again, tricky to time because of Alice and high season. While I could go in May, I don't want to use up a large percentage of my vacation time in the first few months of the 2010-2011 fiscal year.

Reviewing the options and the timing issues, I am now wondering if it would be profitable to consider the extreme or antipodal option of biking either New Zealand or Australia during their 2010-2011 summer. After all, I should be looking at an interesting lump sum of retroactive pay rises next year. Also, it would be cool to a kiwi or kangaroo sticker to Leonardo. ;-) Much to ponder.

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