Photo: © Janelle Dickson
In 2019, I left my desk job in New Zealand to cycle solo across the United States of America. I had never visited America before or undertaken a long distance bicycle trip, but I wanted to do something that felt undoable, completely outside the scope of what I thought I was capable. At the time I had recently finished reading Lands of Lost Borders by the Canadian writer Kate Harris. In the course of detailing her explorations cycling the Silk Road, Harris mentioned a Trans America trip that she took by bike. As a novice cyclist, I thought that perhaps ten months in Central Asia would be biting off more than I could chew, but 3,700 miles across the continental United States seemed both small enough to be attempted and large and unknown enough to challenge me in equal measure.
I am currently in the process of writing a book about this expedition. Part travel memoir, part fusion of science, natural history and philosophy, it is a love song to the joy and the magic of the perpetual motion inherent in the world. So far the writing of the book has spanned three years, seven countries and countless libraries, cafes, bedrooms, kitchen tables, offices, tents and hillsides. I live part time in New Zealand and travel as often as possible, usually by bike.