Regular readers will no doubt have noticed, on the right under my picture, a movie clapperboard has appeared with Sleepless 'til Seattle on it. What's that all about I hear you ask? Well, I'll tell you.
Albert Einstein once said: "Life is like a bicycle, in order to keep your balance you must keep moving forward".
At the start of the year I hinted that a big new adventure was coming and I promised to reveal all nearer the time. Well, that time is here at last. But before I elaborate, some back story, as they say in the movies:
Back in July 2010, which now seems a lifetime ago, my best friend of all time, Pauline, left Scotland on a great adventure to fulfill her life's ambition: to cycle, unaided, round the world on a bicycle for two years. It was tough to see her go but I was and still am, very proud of her. When people marvel at her continued achievements I say to myself, "yep, that's my best friend they're talking about".
I get to take part too. Normally I'm at home playing the role of Base Camp Manager, but back in September I went to Spain to cycle the Camino de Santiago with her, a memory that will stay with me forever.
Pauline is currently in La Paz, Bolivia and you can catch up on her adventures by clicking on this link: The Bicycle Diaries.
Over the last 16 years we've created many memories together, and we're about to create a big one. On 15 May I will join Pauline in Boston, then after a few days organising we will cycle south for 40 miles to Plymouth. This will be our official starting point and from there lies 4,500 miles of cycling over 150 days all the way to Seattle on the west coast.
Our route will take us north to begin with, for about a month, when we'll reach Buffalo, near the border with Canada. Our route then continues along the northern states all the way to the Rocky Mountains and over into Seattle, with a small detour into Canada around Glacier National Park.
The mention of this park brings one part of this adventure crashing to the front of my mind: bears! We're camping wild most of the way and mostly in bear country. Glacier National Park in Montana is home to some 300 Grizzly bears, the thought of which does nothing for my bowel control. Luckily we'll have my trusty world-travelled mascot, Tigger, along to protect us!
So this got me thinking that there's a fair chance I wont get much sleep all the way, so I came up with an idea to call the adventure Sleepless 'til Seattle. As we cycle along we'll meet all sorts of interesting people no doubt and visit many places of interest, all of which we're going to film in High definition. Then upon my return a feature-length film will be made for release sometime in 2012.
If you'd like to follow our progress or just find out more, either click on the clapperboard on the right or just type in your browser address bar www.sleeplesstilseattle.com
Bears, mountain men, dueling banjos, tornado alley and saddle sores are all going to come together to make one "awfully big adventure".
Come along with us.