Heart To Beat
At the beginning of 2015 Harry became unwell whilst mountain biking. One month and several medical examinations later he had an open heart surgery with 6 bypasses.Harry has been lucky: there had been no heart attack. Thanks to the efforts during mountain biking the threatening closure of the veins came to light, before a heart attack could occur. A rehabilitation period followed after the operation. Harry wants to take this a step further and make a long bike ride: 3 months after the operation, he and his wife Roelie cycled from home to the Mediterranean Sea. Harry is aware that he is (and will remain) a heart patient, but he also has an unlimited confidence in (and is grateful for) his “pimped” heart. He became stronger than even before, did more sport, eats healthier and loses excess body weight. Of course Roelie goes with him. Harry and Roelie become “Heart To Beat”.
Simple and Intense
In 2017 we cycle the Great Divide Mountainbike Route. In the Rocky Mountains we leave our normal life behind or at least push it far into the background. For a few months we say goodbye to the luxury life, the social life, the working life, the predictable life, the planned life, the worrisome life. As a team we cover more than 6000 km, trudge across the high mountains, share the views and insights and enjoy the simplicity of “eat-sleep-ride”. We’re growing even further towards each other. But even with two there is plenty of room for self-reflection during the long stages. The continental divide, the watershed of the North American continent, becomes the turning point in our lives. We realize that we have never lived so intensely, but at the same time so simply! We also realize that we have never been so happy. We are really living and get inspired by various impressions, situations and encounters.
Once back home, the feeling of “simple and intense” quickly disappears, giving way to “many and insignificant”. We are homesick for the cycling adventure and the feeling of freedom that is inextricably linked to it. This way of life, rich and happy in every way, is in such a contrast to our work and life until now. We finally come to the realization that those fat cars, all those useless possessions, going to work every day top dressed (but with stress in the body), cannot be a goal in our lives.Four weeks after returning home we look at each other and we decide to change course and start with adventure thinking: we want to cycle around the whole world and we plan to do that for 3 years (and then we'll see). We're quitting our jobs. We sell our house and everything in it (including the garage of course). In the end we are left with four moving boxes with really personal things. We cancel all our insurance policies and receive the status of emigrant from the Dutch authorities, leaving with an unknown destination: the cycling tour around the world can begin; it is June 29, 2018
In the spring of 2020, the adventure will be "on hold" due to Corona. We had just started our second part of our worldbybike tour: we left from Ushuaia towards Alaska. After being stuck in strict Argentinian quarantine for 10 weeks, we return to the Netherlands and the mindset has definitely changed to an urge for simplicity and relaxation. The trip has inspired us in hospitality and environmental awareness. We need to help each other more, complain less and better protect the fragile planet. Meanwhile we work hard, we fill the bank account (and unfortunately ourselves too) and take Spanish lessons to resume the adventure one day.
... and on again!
In mid-2023 the time has come and we will resume the adventure. We will once again give up our jobs, cycle warmly in the summer and autumn in Eastern and Southern Europe respectively and pick up the thread again in Argentina at the end of December. VAMOS!
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