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Sleeplessly Posted on September 1, 2011

I leave in six hours. Oh dear. I really should be asleep by now.

I didn’t actually need to be up this late. As I’ve realized several times over the past few days, I am actually completely ready to leave. To my great surprise (I never thought I’d get this far) all the big things are crossed off my to do list, and when my father launches into one of his barrages of “have you remembered this? are you taking this? what will you do if…? what’s your plan for…?” I have the satisfaction of reassuring him that I have all eventualities covered. All I’m really doing now is tying up loose ends – mostly just responding to people’s emails and making sure everything’s packed in exactly the right place. The trip won’t be doomed if some of this last-minute stuff doesn’t get done.

Of course, there will be a few things I’ve forgotten to do or buy that I won’t even be aware of until I’m a few weeks into the ride. And there will be countless eventualities I haven’t prepared for. That’s the nature of it. That’s why I’m doing it. For the chaos.

The depressing flipside to this is that there will also be things I’ve spent good money on that I find I don’t need and end up giving away. I fully expect my panniers to get lighter over the next few weeks. They better had – I don’t currently have room for food.

Oh, I really should go to sleep! I just crept downstairs to get the charger for my laptop, and accidentally knocked over my fully loaded bike. The barbag and one of the panniers were open, and their contents exploded all over the quarry-tiled floor with an almighty crash. Luckily I had just removed my camera – I doubt it would have survived. Let’s hope that’ll be the glitch for this mission.

Because everything is basically ready to go, my body’s been hard at work finding last-minute spanners to throw into the works.  For the past week, an unidentified and extremely inconvenient infection has been strenuously attacking my throat, nose, sinuses, ears, head and jaw. I feel awful – dizzy, achy, lethargic and permanently grumpy. It’s the worst possible timing. But I refuse to postpone my departure. I’ve managed to convince myself that this is at least partially psychosomatic, and that a nice day out on my bike will be the best possible cure. And, perhaps more effectively, I’m contravening my usual principles and taking antibiotics three times a day.

I think sleep would probably help too – don’t you?

Good night. My next post will be from somewhere on the road.