Finally, a blog that’s not about motorcycling…Yep, with just a week to go until my first marathon, I thought I’d better write something about running — or lack of. I’m sitting in a Malaysian roadside cafe, shaded from the stifling high 30s temperatures and 90% humidity, and there’s no way I can head out for any training. It’s just too damn hot… Continue reading Running scared?
It’s not every day you get to meet a real Princess and then go riding motorcycles with her husband, but then the Kingdom of Bhutan is not your ‘every day’ kind of place. The land of the Thunder Dragon is magical, mystical and awe-inspiring in equal measures, and so are the people in it. Continue reading By Royal appointment
It’s just over a month since I left the UK and started riding east, through France, Germany, Austria, Hungary, Serbia, Bulgaria, Turkey, Iran, Dubai and across India. I’m over 10,000 kilometres into this journey and it’s certainly given me time to reflect on what I’ve let myself in for — and what I’ve left behind me. Continue reading A month on the road and what have I learnt?
Enjoying the madness of India
In the space of just a few hours bumping across the Persian Gulf, I went from Iranian gritty to Dubai glitzy as the dramatic skyline of the United Arab Emirates revealed itself amid a haze of heat and pollution. Inside the catamaran, the sickbags were being handed out – and filled – but I managed to squeeze out onto a small front deck where the warm ocean wind warmed my face, settled my stomach and lifted my spirits. I was on my way again and had made it to the Arabian Peninsula.
Well, I’ve made it out of Iran and managed to get the bike on a boat bound for Dubai, from where I’ll search for a passage to India. While the shores of this vast Islamic Republic slowly recede from view and the Persian Gulf sparkles all around me, this crossing gives me a chance to reflect on my time in this country.
Getting out of Iran is proving to be more difficult than getting in. Imagine my surprise when arriving at the huge port of Bandar e Abbas to find out that it was closed for the Persian New Year holiday celebrations. I was told to use this exit route to Dubai after my Pakistan visa was rejected, leaving me no choice but to ride 2,300km across this arid, hostile landscape to the southern tip of the country, where the United Arab Emirates is within striking distance, just several hours away by boat across the Persian Gulf.
I’m proud to say that I’ve made it into Iran safely, having been chased by rabid dogs, held up at numerous military checkpoints and nearly flattened by huge trucks bearing down on me while I tried to stay upright in a blizzard. The thought of having ridden there all the way from the UK in 11 days is hard to fathom. One thing’s for sure though: I couldn’t have done it without the support of the adventure biking community, who have made things happen for me in a way I never could have alone.