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A year on the road

7 May, 2016

A year on the road

This week I celebrate a year on the road on the seat of my bike, Athena. Although I am no the celebratory type of person, a year can’t stop being a good highlight and I can make a reflection on the journey so far.

Anniversaries are dates that reminds us of beautiful moments, or moments we wish to erase from our memories, but without which we would not be who we are. And although I sometimes think that in some people’s mind this journey has been rather idyllic, it hasn’t always been a sea of roses. I’ve had some bad moments but I’ve always tried to find the positive side things. Thinking the glass is rather half full, although half of it would be filled with liquid and the other one with air. Sometimes it may be full or air.

As an example, I had a fissure in my ribs because of the fall I took when the suspension broke in Uzbekistan, but I could observe the whole of the Milky Way from my tent in the town where the bike was being repaired.

I’ve felt very cold while the whole sky poured down on me, but I managed to cross Siberia in Russia.

I´ve had to learn to ride over various terrains with many falls, but I managed to cross Mongolia.

I’ve had this or that digestive issue, but I’ve tried foods that I didn’t know existed.

Athena had a few problems but thanks to the help of people on the road it keeps on rolling and it had a full personalized maintenance check in India.

Before I started the journey, I wrote a post about the “what ifs” that block us and can stop us from doing what we dream to do. I was reading through them again and I see that some of them happened in some bigger and smaller scales, but here I am, a year later with 42749 km under my belt, 22 countries travelled and new words and phrases learned to boot. Therefore, no “what if” was strong enough to deter me from not doing what I wanted to do and achieve it.

One of the reasons I wanted to take photographs and write but not do video of the journey is because of the time consuming nature of video. It would require more time to work on it instead of submerging myself in the journey, disconnect, imagine and reflect as I go through the road, especially in some parts where it’s as straight as a spaghetti dish.

Although today it would seem that there is an obsession to photograph and film everything, I still prefer to put the phone or camera on the side, speak and share the moment with whomever I have in front of me 100% without having to try and post it online in real time. I want to observe, learn and take the necessary time to process it and transmit it through the texts in the blog. Sometimes it is also possible to photograph it and share it in form of images.

I’ve to admit as well that I have not felt the passing of time and the year reached me having completed 366 days –it’s been a leap year- since I left Barcelona on the 1st of May. The warning signs mostly show on my body with one or another grey hair on my head or in my beard, as well as in my bank account which has depleted considerably. My bottom line has the orange tone now.

Hence why I would like to end this post with my most heartfelt gratitude to those who have received at least one of 38 photographs as of today. Among them, 29 have been sold through the web and 9 have been raffled among those who have contributed financially within their means. These contributions have helped me continue and I feel some shy away from contributing with the smaller amounts. I’d like to clarify that although some donation amounts look rather small, they help me where I am and they really make themselves count when put together.

I have been able to complete this year thanks to savings I had to start the journey and thanks to people that have been interested in the journey, follow it, support it and share it.

Some days ago I read a phrase that said: “We must only look once back and it is only to contemplate how far we’ve come.” I’d like to add: “We must also look to the sides, to see all the people that have been with us, and look forwards as we try to reach the horizon which keeps getting further away the more we progress.”

One year.

. .