Cycle to Sahara
Our friends are what inspire us at Arvin. We've probably said that before somewhere... We mean it. These are the folks that keep us rolling, drive us to continue finding ways of introducing our story and experiences to new people out there.
Without further or do, we'd like for you to hear a tale from our good friends back in the UK, Maddison and Kaas. Enjoy.
5654km; from Falmouth, Cornwall to Laayoune, Western Sahara.
Simplicity ensues in the basic principles needed to survive and thrive in your element; food, shelter and good company. It is the key to slow living, to friendships and ultimately to happiness. But if anything, with all of these things, considered, it is fundamental to adventure. By keeping things simple on the road, you give more time to what really matters.
In the early summer of 2016, we set our challenge; to cycle from our front door in Falmouth to the door of the Desert in Morocco. Chasing an irrepressible desire for freedom and crafting an art out of getting lost and making do. We downsized and donated possessions and, with panniers overpacked and routes underprepared, discreetly donned our cycling bibs to embark on the first leg of our journey.
We're not cyclists by any stretch of the imagination, for us it marked an accessible means of transport. The day we started was the first day of training, but we were always aware of the challenges we'd face. Both physically and mentally we had mountains to climb and distances to cover, a business to run and a journey to live. We had to be a team from day one and that would be fundamental to our survival. Although the definition of our trip was not for all, we wanted to align with the notion that if you could do it for a day, could you do it forever, or at least for a while?
360 minutes and countless revolutions, was our daily average of time spent on the bicycles, it really is a long time to meditate. Fixated on dreams, goals, hopes, fears, and ambitions; quiet roads allowed us the time to cycle side by side. We'd talk for hours about all the crazy things we wanted to achieve in our lifetime.
With so much time to reflect and with such a wealth of space to let the mind roam, coupled with physically overcoming the day's challenges; you feel empowered. You begin to remind yourself how important your timeline is, without taking a lifetime to realise it. You meet interesting folk as a bi-product of opening your heart to the opportunities life presents and these are the people that reaffirm, or contradict, your behavioral patterns. It keeps you curious and inquisitive, a student and observer of the wonders of life. With fewer constraints on how to live your life, led by your own intuition, You find freedom!
Trading common ground for new ground and finding our own definition of alternative existence, became a priceless lesson. Teaching us that most people are innately kind, the few that have the least are always willing to give the most and the reception given to two wayward folks on two wheels, was one of simple curiosity, peace and welcome. We aren't sure of our next destination, but we are sure of our desire to continue to travel and work in unique ways. To take fewer flights and more wild roads, to harvest the land and sustain ourselves on the fruits of our labour. To invest in more conversation and fewer things, and to remain with our minds free and hearts open to the endless possibilities the world can provide. Perhaps it's a rose-tinted dream, but it's a simple life if it's one lived well.
Words & Photo - Maddison Araceli Willmott