A dream becoming reality.

Two years ago my life was turned upside down, my realtionship came to an end, I couldn't afford to get the house we had on just my name. It ment that I had to go back living with my parents. It's something you're not looking forward to if you are 30 years old. My parents didn't mind it, but in the back of my head it felt like the biggest defeat in my life. But ending the relationship was my decision and these were the consequences of it. I wanted more out of life and this involved me not wanting children.

I've been a road cyclist for a 2 years by then, I loved the freedom of it and just being out and about. Going wherever you want and exploring area's you've never been to before. I had gotten myself a gravelbike after the breakup and some bags with the intention of going bikepacking, hardly anything came of it. I am still not sure why I never really got into it. Maybe it was the little amount of stuff you take with you. I'll probably never find out. Nearing the end of summer 2020 I was looking into a bicycle that could actually take on a lot of luggage, after a lot of searching and debating with a colleague of mine I went to a Santos dealer (Sector 2 Bikes) in Elst.

After 2 test rides I already knew what kind of bicycle I wanted, it was going to be a Santos Travelmaster 2+. The frame was going to be in a a stone grey color with hollow orange letters and the rohloff hub had to be orange aswell. now it was just going to be a matter of waiting for it to be finished. In the meantime I had gotten myself some basic camping gear. I went the cheapskate route and had gotten myself a really bad sleeping mat, an okish air pillow and for the time of year the worst sleeping bag I could've gone with (I didn't know that when I bought it). A couple uneventfull weeks later and my bicycle was ready to go on it's first camping trip. From Elst to Loenen, which was if I am not mistaken only 54 kilometers away from eachother. A distance I could ride on a road bike without a problem. But since this was a type of bicycle I hadn't ever ridden it was going to be tough, even more so because it was also the first time riding with so much heavy weight on it. That day I was going to accompanied by my colleague who has been doing this for way longer than me. For me it was 2 hours and 20 minutes of pure suffering rewarded with some good views and camping at a rather nice campsite. That night I also got reminded that I shouldn't have been a cheapskate on my sleeping gear. It was the end of September and the nights where already getting cold.

When I look back at 2021 it was a really bad year, and not because of corona. I felt depressed, had nothing to look forward to and had overall no really future plans. Except for a bicycle tour that I had planned. I actually had 2 that year. The first one was semi-succesfull, I went to Limburg and back in a week. It was semi succesfull because I forgot to plan one day. But that's in the past now and I've learned for that mistake. My second bicycle tour was a mess, I had planned to go towards Switzerland and back in 4 weeks. Which should've been doable but sadly enough the weather took a turn for the worse. Around day 6 the forecast became really bad and I had to make a decision to keep on going or going back home. I still think I made the best decision, right around that time I was in Luxembourg and would be going towards my old neighbourhood in Germany. In the next few days the area toward it was going to be flooded and that would've most likely caused a lot of problems for me. So what started of really well turned into a mess.

After this fiasco, I've not been doing to good myself. It always felt like something was missing, something that I am not able to find where I am now. This is something I have discussed with my sister aswell. Having lived in Germany, next to hills and forests, might have somewhat spoiled us. I don't think there has been a single day here in the Netherlands that I felt at home. Me being on my touring bike in Germany and Luxembourg made me feel more alive then I have living in the Netherlands.

Like I said at the start, I wanted more from life. To be more precise, I want to find a place where I do feel at home. And to achieve that I have decided to leave behind the Netherlands and find this place, this place that might be just behind the next corner but might also the in a far away place. I have always wanted to see more of our world aswell, so to me this is catching two birds with one stone. I've already quit my job, gotten myself a passport and have gotten all the gear I could possibly need on this trip. I have no clue of what I might encounter and what might happen, it is also a bit scary. But overall I am looking forward to it, making a dream come true. I will start my journey the middle of march 2022, heading towards the Nordkapp will be my first major destination.

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