Guest Posts Other People's Adventures

Everything Will Be Fine. Here’s Proof.

Today’s guest post is from former English teacher Jamie Bowlby-Whiting, whose success adventuring on an absurdly low budget has made even my best attempts feel decadent. He’s developed two core principles for his adventures: 1. impossible is nothing, and 2. everything will be fine (until it isn’t).

This story reminds me so very strongly of that first carefree summer I spent crossing Europe in 2007 (particularly the ever-popular Eastern European arrest), and so it’s not without a little pang of nostalgia that I publish this post. Take it away, Jamie…

Life is Either a Daring Adventure or Nothing at All by GreatbigScaryWorld dot com

A few months ago, I found myself working as an English teacher at a very expensive private school in Istanbul. And I couldn’t help but take a step back and look at my life. In the words of the kids: “it sucked”.

The children’s low levels of English were on a par with their low desires to learn. They ran the school, overruling the teachers and even refusing to sit the compulsory end of year tests. I felt like a glorified babysitter, except that none of the children understood what I was saying. And even if they did, they’d forgotten their pencil cases so couldn’t do any work.

“This isn’t what I want,” I thought. “This isn’t what life is about.”

So, rather than complaining about it, I chose to make a change to my life. 

Guest Posts Other People's Adventures

What Exactly Is It That Stops You Following Your Dreams?

This is a guest post by Fraser Baillie, who last month took the giant leap of jacking it all in and hitting the road. Today he shares some retrospective thoughts, 3,000 miles from home at the far end of Europe, about the turning point that made his dream into the reality he now lives every day.

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What Stops You From Following Your Dreams?

The single thing that made a difference for me that day — about 19 months ago now — was a subtle change in belief. 

Other People's Adventures Philosophy Of Travel

The Surprising Truth About Cycling Across A Continent

Yesterday, Tim & Laura Moss went for a bike ride.

They set off from Tim’s place near London and pedalled across the Surrey Hills for a few pleasant hours beneath glorious sunshine.

In the evening, they stopped riding and pitched camp.

This morning, they got up, had breakfast, and packed away their tent. (Or so I assume. They might well be having a lie-in.)

Imagine they’re now cycling back to Tim’s place. Some would call what they’ve done a #microadventure. Others, an S24O. Most of us wouldn’t bother with silly buzzwords and would just call it a bike ride with a some camping thrown in.

And most of us wouldn’t feel too concerned about the prospect of doing something similar — right?

Arrival in Edinburgh

Tim & Laura aren’t cycling back to Tim’s place. 

They’re going to continue in the same direction as yesterday. They’re going to pitch camp again tonight. And they’re going to keep on doing this. Until they get to Australia.

The only difference between going away for a night and going halfway round the planet is repetition.

For how long could you repeat a pleasant day’s ride followed by an interesting evening under the stars?

Quite a while, I’ll bet, if every day were different to the last. And I’m betting that the prospect sounds a lot less arduous than ‘cycling to Australia’. (Unless you’re reading this in Australia. Substitute for ‘England’.)

It is critical to understand this, the present-moment on-the-ground reality of cycling across continents, if we dream of doing so ourselves. We cannot allow the epic scale of the idea to overwhelm us. When we reduce our thinking to the scale of the constituent parts involved — a simple bike ride and a night in the great outdoors — the idea suddenly feels eminently manageable.

(So manageable, ironically, that those for whom the ‘insurmountable challenge’ is the driving force are often disappointed by the truth.)

Tim’s been blogging for years and I have no doubt that his and Laura’s unfolding journey will be an inspiration to many. You can follow it at I’ll revisit his story in a few months’ time to see just how far all those day-rides and overnight camps have taken them…

Films Other People's Adventures

How This 2‑Minute Clip Won The ACA’s Bicycle Travel Video Contest

This year I was asked to be a judge for the Adventure Cycling Association of America’s first Bicycle Travel Video Contest.

Like many of the other judges (whose number included Dom, Alastair, Friedel & Andrew, Russ & Laura, Michelle, and Ryan), I watched a lot of videos that were kind of OK.

I watched a few that were quite terrible.

I watched a handful that were really good.

But Stefan’s winning 158-second clip was far ahead of the pack. Watch it and see why.

What was it about this video that I found so compelling? 

Books Europe & The Near East 2007 Other People's Adventures

The Weave Of The Ride (or, Janapar from Andy’s point of view)

Tom, Mark and Andy in Montreux

In the summer of 2007, my best mate Andy Welch and I set off from my front door. We’d called our expedition ‘Ride Earth’, and were all set to cycle round the world. But the experiences that followed changed all we thought we knew about, travel, adventure and cycle-touring. 

Weave Of The Ride, Andy’s own account of that eight-month journey from England to Armenia, offers an alternative perspective on the story that ends with Ride Earth’s disbandment and the beginning of two new solo adventures. In this guest post, Andy goes into detail about his new book.