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I have always been keen on travelling and meeting people. I have always found it easy to talk with people, even complete strangers, and am very rarely lost for words. My interests are broad, so I can usually find something in common with most people I meet. I even seem to be able to bridge the gap, even when there isn't a common language. Most people consider that I have a cheerful disposition. I try to be helpful to others, when the opportunity arises.
I am now fast approaching 60, but feel myself to be young at heart. My body, however, can occasionally remind me of my true age. When it comes to cycling, I can often match the abilities of some much younger than myself, especially over longer distances. When it comes to walking. 12 miles plus, and I'm really pushing myself. These days, I prefer to take in the countryside, the cultures of the countries I pass through, and the gastronomic delights. I am now, not too proud to jump on a train with my bicycle, if the need arises. Work constraints, have prevented me visiting as much of the world as I would have liked, along with some prevarication. Now that I am a semi retired/freelance gardener, the winter months are my opportunity to make up for lost time. I am single, with few constraints now, just the amount of active years left I have to enjoy it, so I'm pulling my finger out.
To always like to see the best in the people I meet, and hope they see the best in me.
Why I’m on Couchsurfing
HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING
At the moment, it's confined to meeting up with fellow couchsurfers. Going out for a drink, or showing them around York. If they are cyclists, I will accompany them and show them places of interest in York and the surrounding countryside. I have offered to host in the past, but had no requests. Possibly due to being too far out of York. I plan to do it again, now that I am nearer the city centre.
I will be travelling around Spain and Portugal for 2 months, in February and March. It will be my first experience of Couchsurfing, and I'm a little apprehensive. I love meeting new people and hearing of their experiences, so I'm sure I'll really enjoy it, once I get into it. I'm looking forward to having lots of interesting tales and experiences to relate to my friends and family in England.
CYCLING; WALKING; PHOTOGRAPHY; MUSIC (in it's many forms); THEATRE and FILM; VISITING GARDENS and SITES OF HISTORIC INTEREST.
One Amazing Thing I’ve Done
1. Crossing the High Tatras on foot, from Slovakia into Poland, to the town of Zakopane.
2. Cycling the length of the Pyrennes, and going over all the high passes.
3. Cycling from Paris to Brest and back. 1200kms in 86 hours.
4. Cycling from Lands End, England to John O'Groats, Scotland. Three times, by three different routes. The first time alone in 84 hours, covering 1400kms. The second time, in a group over 10 days, and the last over 3 and a half weeks, with a companion. The last being the most enjoyable. We followed the west coast of England and Scotland, also following the border with Wales. We also made some excursions on to the isles of Arran, Mull and Skye.
5. Meeting up and cycling with Heinz Stücke. The Most Travelled Man in the World according to the Guiness Book of Records. I met him the first time in 1978 in Yeovil, Somerset, England. He was selling his brochure outside Woolworths, for something like fifty pence. I bought a copy, and also bought him a sandwich and drink. I would have liked to have put him up, to learn more of his travels, but was living with my parents at the time. He had then been travelling for eighteen years. He said, his intention was to visit every country in the world, and not go back to one until he had completed his objective.
In 1996, on a Saturday, I was just coming out of Barclays Bank in York. When to my surprise, I spotted a bicycle I recognised from 1978, across the street, along with some other paraphernalia and a man who I knew to be Heinz, but whose appearance had somewhat changed, since last we met. I told him of are previous contact, and assumed as he was back in England, he had completed his quest. This turned out to be the case. He had accommodation in York, but was heading back to Paris, his base now, via London, the next day. He asked me if I would like to accompany him some of the way. It turned out to be as far as Doncaster. Enroute he bought me a meal and a drink. I bought one of his new brochures, which were now £3.50. He is now of on a new venture for the Guiness Book of Records, visiting all the islands he couldn't get to on his first trip. His old Faithful bicycle of 50 years, is now on display in a shop in Paris. He is now continuing his adventures, in his 70's, on a folding bicycle. Will I meet him again? Probably not by chance.
6. My first cycling tour at the age of eleven. Touring around Somerset and Dorset, staying at two youth hostels and having to abandon my bicycle at a cafe in Beaminster, due to heavy snow fall.
Countries I’ve Visited
Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland
Countries I’ve Lived In