🚴♂️ Day 172: Toksun ➡️ Turpan 🇨🇳 54km 🚴♂️: "Today was my last day riding as part of The Long Way Home team. We have ridden along lush landscapes, beautiful coastlines, scorching deserts + freezing mountain passes; camped in derelict houses, drains, bus shelters + wedding halls; stood tall against scary dogs + ignored noises of hungry rats; eaten at least one hundred snickers bars each and very questionable looking meat; been constantly surprised (and humbled) by the kindness of strangers + the ability to communicate well without speaking the same language - memories I will take away with me on this trip of a lifetime!
I remember Becs buying bike touring books long before we started and I thought she was ridiculous. She dreamed of biking across the world and didn't think it would be that hard. Before I knew it I had quit my job and left behind my very supportive boyfriend + friends for 6 months. I'll be forever grateful that she let me tag along for the ride!
Additionally to Becs successfully navigating us to the middle of the Chinese desert, she's planned our visas to perfection, fixed all my punctures (without complaint), rewired my solar panel, unbent my wonky tyres, mastered our cooking stoves, eaten 'interesting' food offered to both of us so we didn't appear rude, patiently waited for me to pack my bags every morning + calmed my fears when I heard noises outside of our tent (everytime we camped).
She's been so kind and encouraged me when I have struggled and been brave + strong when one of us needed to be!
As I tag out, another equally brave + strong kiwi cyclist tags in. Kat Phillips is traversing China with Becs to raise money for much-needed bikes in support of @worldbicyclerelief. Kat is a total legend to undertake this challenge during winter.
Big love also to our original windblocker ET who is working hard to smash her 4th Olympics, and Char who looked after us so well post-crash in Iran. Thanks girls!
So.. it's been a total privilege riding halfway home with my bestie Becs supporting the Forward Foundation. For anyone contemplating a trip like this I couldn't recommend it more (just make sure you have your own Becs to show you the way)."