I get a ticket to New Zeland for a trip that doesn't qualify as ‘for pleasure.’
Within 12 hours, I pack a light bag and realize that my only real luggage is my Brompton, the foldable bike in a trolly-like size with the firmness of a tank.
Without knowing what to expect from this trip, I feel that for my mental stability taking my bike with me is the right thing to do, although, in of itself, cycling is all but about stability per se.
I find myself on the other side of the world without a real plan, but with lots of confused ideas that need to be processed and ordered - like only cycling allows me to do.
When I’m on my bike, it's important where I cycle, not how far… it needs to be special and enriching, like those incredible kilometers on Ocean Beach, a deserted shore with the most compact and stable low tide surface on the way to Cape Kidnappers. No personal records or QOM’s, only the pleasure of cycling and luckily steps away from the ocean with the waves that are caressing my wheels and the breeze that sweeps my wet forehead.
My attitude is at the anthesis of the traditional cyclist who’s always testing her own limits. For me, cycling has to offer a degree of adventure and newness.
I’m always excited to ride on new roads, and I'm always hungry for unedited courses and new experiences. The curiosity boosts my courage forward, like when I find myself alone on a single track in a fern forest going to the Huka Falls, and all I can do is drawing in sounds, smells, colors and stay present. No time for doubts and second guesses.
Natural sounds and sensations that feel more like melodies, each place has its own like this forest: crickets so loud to daze anyone, newly cut eucalyptus trees secreting a pungent scent, dry fields so dry and yellow against the lush green vegetation around. I take it all in.
Cycling is, for me, a source of physical and mental wellness. It’s not imperative to reach a goal or a summit - although I usually do - but rather to be wholeheartedly fulfilled by the experience. Being in a respectful alignment with what my body and heart need it's more important than anything else.
It’s only by going inward and listening to myself that I can find a strong determination to act. Cycling facilitates and trains this process and I'm able to translate it into all other areas of my life.
Taking my Brompton to New Zeland has helped to adapt to the new environment and circumstances much faster, let alone restore the grin on my face. More importantly, being outside and close to nature has kept at bay my negative thoughts.
I’m now ready for a new adventure with my Brompton (and even before this unexpected trip), hoping to be in good company next time, as cycling with others, raises the bar higher.