Scotland has been wonderful…not overly warm but lots of fresh sunny days and blue skies. And this trip has taught me that the challenges of long cycling trips are all about the weather. M arrived by train in Stirling on Friday afternoon just as I cycled into town and we had a fab weekend cycling the three of us until he had to jump on the train back home from Inverness on Monday afternoon. We hardly touched a busy road all weekend due to Scotland’s fantastic cycle route of pathways and old roads that avoids the A9. We passed through beautiful valleys looking up at snow-capped hills. We did cycle through a brief snow then hail storm which was amusing (what are we doing in this?!!) but the sun saved us again.
So it’s now only two easy days’ riding until my Dad and I reach John O’Groats, I can’t quite believe we’re nearly there! But I was pedalling along today thinking that in a way I don’t want to rush there because then the journey is over. I’m not saying that I am not VERY excited about going home and seeing M and my friends and family again but the end of these sort of adventures can be a tiny bit sad because you’ve made it, it’s all done. But I am so glad that I have really and truly enjoyed the journey. Every day I have felt so lucky to be doing what I’m doing, even on the more challenging bits. I’ve been buzzing all the way.
And what a life lesson…remembering to enjoy the journey rather than thinking only of getting to where we want to go. This is even more obvious having spent the last 15 days on a bicycle with so, so many drivers tearing past me in a mega rush to get somewhere. And I know I can be the same, rushing about thinking there’s never enough time…but when so many cars have hurtled past me it does start to make me wonder how crazy this life can be (especially when I’m passed by those drivers who don’t know that you should leave some distance between the car and a cyclist, I’ve had too many hairy scary moments!)
Hours of cycling time gives plenty of thinking time and aside from wanting to stay as fit as I feel right now when I return home (and be able to eat as heartily as I can right now!) I’ve also thought that at any point when I find myself getting into that manic rush mode again to apply the choice word of one of my nephews: chillax. Because I’ll get to wherever I’m going, so just enjoy.