On Saturday, March 26th, 2022, we will be leaving the CHAS Rachel House children’s hospice in Fife, Scotland, at the start of a two year (‘ish) cycle around the planet. We are doing this in support of Children’s Hospices Across Scotland (CHAS) and the Hospicices of Hope Ukraine Appeal.

Why are we doing this…? That’s a tough one to answer. Firstly we aren’t cyclists. While it may sound a little strange, we don’t even like cycling for the sake of cycling all that much. We do enjoy engaging with people, engaging with people from different walks of life and from different cultures. Whether that engagement is through a random encounter along the road, a generous host during an overnight stop, or even a remote connection through our posts, it all adds up to form the main reason for planning to pedal twenty-five thousand miles around the planet. Engagement with you!

Okay, so we could have used a more relaxing mode of transport to achieve all of the above, especially noting that we aren’t really cyclists. Planes, trains and automobiles spring to mind, or even one of those cool motorbikes that Euan McGregor and Charley Boorman used, but no, a cycle it is. The speed of a cycle, especially one pedalled at the speed that we can manage, is perfect to achieve all of our personal goals for the trip. There seems something magically magnetic about a fully loaded tour bike that compels complete strangers to engage with us, regardless of how smelly we are, if only to question our mental state.

The other reason for embarking on this tour is the adventure of it all. While we sit here writing these words we have no idea what form many forms that adventure will take. There are very certainties in life and fewer on such an undertaking, but what is for sure is that our plans will not go to plan and that’s where the adventure will start.

Finally, we are doing this to take a break. Not a holiday, but a break. A break from life. A break from watching stuff on the television. A break from buying stuff in the shop. A break from doing stuff that doesn’t achieve anything (weeding the garden jumps to mind with this one!). At times we feel mentally exhausted due to the stuff that we get tangled up in during our everyday lives without any of it adding to anything of real value. We are therefore looking forward to all this stuff being replaced by the basics in life of where to find food, where to find water, and where to find a bed for the night. Basically, we are doing this to have a go at being bums for a couple of years… or more correctly vagabonds! 

Bob & Deborah Gulliver