About the trip
Some five years ago I told Andy of my dream to bicycle "around the world" for two years. I think the idea came to me after an especially long and rewarding bike ride and I was still probably high on endorphins. Even so the idea immediately struck a chord with Andrew who most vigorously advocated it.
Despite his enthusiasm, he never really believed that I would give up career and comfort to do it. I never doubted my resolve, except when cashing big Silicon Valley paychecks. So finally I disfigured myself in order to make sure I didnt forget the promise. (Years ago I tattooed four geckos on my upper left arm, two to represent my years in the states getting ready for the trip, and two to represent the two years on the road.)
O.K. so we went a little over budget on the time in the States getting ready, it had been nearly three years. In the back of my mind I hope we go overboard on the trip as well. We should have started in 1996 in May. But the delay gave Andrew the time to make a baby with a friend in NYC. My accomplishments were far less significant, but I did find a good juncture at which to end my long and sometimes rewarding career.
Now we both appreciate the freedom of biking these 24 months. Just a few weeks before the start of the trip there were a number of nagging doubts despite our numerous other bicycle trips together (see Past Voyages Photo Galleries.) Can we really ride our bikes this far? Is it going to be a drag to carry all that stuff? How will my hair look after a day of riding? More importantly: will we kill one another if we spend that much time together? The test we planned was riding for several weeks in the Mexico and Cuba. It turned out to be a great and wonderful adventure and a perfect prelude to more serious travel. (see Belize, Mexico and Cuba Triplogues and Photo Galleries).
Now the odyssey of our lifetime lies before us and the first year is well mapped out by Andrew. (He is responsible for the logistics of our journey, while true to my geeky past, and avoiding my geographical impairment, I look after the technical details of the trip.) We took a well-established route across the states through the southern states making our way from San Diego, California to St. Augustine, Florida (California to Florida). We'd hoped to find some southern hospitality and avoid hostility where possible. This leg of our journey may be the most savage and trying of the two years. Open space and lack of civilization were our biggest obstacles. (See route maps)
From Florida we began once again in Europe. (No, we did not bike across the Atlantic. This is not a purists trip; we will bike, boat, fly and even resort to motorized ground transport when necessary, except in the US where we rode from shore to shore.) The concept coined by Andrew was "Casablanca to Cairo via Helsinki" or "Africa to the Arctic and Back". As we found ourselves about two weeks behind schedule and facing other hardships, we made the trip less ambitious and surely less poetic. Poetry is beautiful but practicality is the god we both pray to as we plan our routes. Practicality colored by whim, an odyssey of this magnitude must be sprinkled with a little frivolity.
Next destinations will be in the southern hemisphere. With much of 1998 to be spent in Asia. None of the route is planned to any detail at this time, but we plan to pass through Australia, Indonesia, parts of Indochina, India, Sri Lanka, etc.
Plan is the operative word, from our past voyages weve learned that flexibility is the difference between a hellish trip and a fantastic adventure. One of the things in flux is whether we will remain traveling together throughout the trip. For the moment we have completed the US transcontinental, European and Middle Eastern parts of the journey and plan to ride together as long as it make sense to both of us.
One of our hopes is to have friends, family and others join us for segments of the journey. Friends and interested parties will be able to track our progress and check our schedule by referring to this web site. "Where are they now" will most oftenhave estimated dates of where we will be and when, and anyone will be able to e-mail us so we can coordinate a rendezvous.
Thanks for stopping by and checking out the details of our trip, e-mail us or we'll see you on the road!
© 1997 Frederick Felman and Andrew Broan, All rights reserved. No part of this web site may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means without permission in writing from authors or their agents.