We’ve always talked about what we could be doing better, better food, cheaper days, better teamwork, more intelligent problem-solving. For each positive practices we have there is 2 negative and it is about time we address them to prove that we are responsible and intelligent adults who are also problem solving wizards.
To get you in the mood here are some inspiring quotes from people with healthy, positive attitudes towards mistake’s –
“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”
– Thanks Albert Einstein!
“Isn’t it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?”
– You’re so right L.M. Montgomery!
“Freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes.”
– Deep, Gandhi
“Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment.”
– Thats so me Rita Mae Brown,
“Mistakes are the growing pains of wisdom.”
– Thats so you William Jordan
“We all make mistakes but one has to move on.”
– Jeffrey Archer
“And a step backward, after making a wrong turn, is a step in the right direction.”
– Kurt Vonnegut,
And now you are sufficiently moistened with the topic, here is how we have recognised and rectified our mistakes-
Different styles should be celebrated
It is obvious after our first 3 months that it was a mistake to think we could cycle around the world together harmoniously without effort (like we thought would happen). Dan is a beastly cyclist and I am not. I am a meandering cyclist and Dan is not. What to do, what to do? We need to stop squabbling and being frustrated by our lack of compatibility, our different styles should be celebrated and we need to work with it, not against it.
So we have decided to ride separately, periodically. We have a second tent so we can have freedom and our own experiences. Whether it be for a couple of days or a couple of weeks, we plan to make our own way every now and again. We will have beautiful reunions and seperate stories and we will enjoy our time together. We can learn skills and lessons to share with each other and elevate our experience as well as having basic freedoms.
We will still spend most of our time together, think of it as the 80/20 rule. 80% together 20% apart, or maybe 70/30 but you get the idea. We will have opportunity to ride and live at our own chosen pace. And knowing that we have a choice is what is really important.
A Non-Existant Race
This is an excerpt from downtheroad.org that sums up our mistake:
“There are only so many hours of daylight. If you plan on spending each and every one of those hours in the saddle racking up the big miles, you’ll have little time or energy left for camping and cooking. The search for a suitable camp spot, food shopping, setting up camp, and cooking your own food are all easier done during daylight hours.
If your focus is mainly on miles, you may find that you don’t have enough time or energy to economize. After a long hot day of death march riding, it’s very tempting to wave the magic credit card at a hotel with room service. Think about what your ultimate goals are: drawing a line on a map or experiencing what your journey has to offer? If you can afford it, credit card touring is much faster since you spend every ride-able moment in the saddle. But you may miss some magic moments of spending time on the side of the road and meeting the locals.”
We have gone days without washing our faces, weeks without nourishing food, nights without sleeping, mornings without appreciation, months without realising. Even though our conscious goal is to be slow, get great experiences with locals and smell the roses, we had fabricated a deadline for everything:
- ‘make it to X before the evening’
- ‘have lunch at X’ – making us want to get there sooner
- ‘leave before 7’ – with no reason why, forgoing a decent breakfast in order to get moving.
- ‘when we get to X we can relax and shower and wash our clothes’. Making us put our heads down to get there.
All these seemingly casual things put us in an unnecessary race where there is no winner. They were an everyday thing and so life was spent not feeling like we were able to stop, or rest since we always had somewhere to be.
So with this mistake now fully realised we can move forward taking steps to slow down. Also number 3 will help us.
3. Every Day Luxury
We have learnt that we have to prep everyday as best we can to get optimal good camp vibes.
We decided on things that were important to us like our food, our bathing and hygiene and making sure we have enough time to indulge in our creativities. Having a:
- Well populated iPod with new music and inspiring podcasts – e.g. Womans Hour BBC
- A pencil sharpener close to hand in order to accurately draw the pattern of that tree when the mood strikes
- Carrying enough water to be able to wash your face, arms and legs of an evening so we can sleep in our tent without stickiness. (It’s the difference between a good and a bad nights sleep)
- Preparing a sandwich, bread and snacks for later in the day
- Leaving enough daylight to embroider
- washing clothes daily
These things are the candle lit bath, the coffee with the girls, beer with the lads and a sleep in on a Saturday for us – important for wellbeing and will help us avoid the desperation to get to somewhere with big fluffy pillows. Because even though we LOVE these things we need to be careful to not do it too much.
Gone now are the days of getting packets of sugary snacks to try and get us to the next town were we would just get more sugary snacks to get us to the town after that! Hooray!