by Penny Obee
Cycling to me has come to represent a lot of different things, all of which I love.
It is the opportunity to escape all that is stressful – riding quickly and hard and without thought for anything except the road I am riding on.
It is sightseeing at its very best– on the seat of a bike you notice things you have missed over and over again when looking out of your car.
It is comraderie with likeminded folks – all of whom share the love of travel and the world that can be seen and heard while you are on a bike.
Six years ago I was nervous about a ride from West Guilford to the Stanhope Airport for fear I wouldn’t be able to get back to Guilford. That year I went on the Spring Trip to Cambridge and the 20 km rail trail seemed almost insurmountable to me. But the Easy Ryders were compassionate and encouraging and soon I found myself able to handle 30 or 40 kilometres. I knew that I wanted more. So, together with a group of friends I began exploring the world of travel on the seat of a bike – and discovered wonderful experiences.
These trips are such a combination of emotions – joy at zipping down a very long hill after the frustration of an incredibly long pedal uphill – laughter when sharing stories with a glass of wine at the end of a day coupled with tears when the going gets really tough – warmth when receiving hugs each day and cold when cycling early in the morning – happiness when enjoying special moments like birthdays and anniversaries with close friends and sadness when the week is over – amazement that folks you didn’t even know before the group formed are now great friends and the overwhelming feeling of accomplishment at the end of a very hard day.
Many of the Easy Ryders have enjoyed cycling in different places around the world. Our group benefits from sharing these experiences and I thought I could share a few of our photos from Tuscany, Provence and Croatia with you.