Beyond the Bike
Beyond the Bike in Zimbabwe can be summed up with the following: desperation and hope, education, cricket, rocks, sand, gold mines, lions and rhinos. We only spent a week in Zim which is a great shame as it is such an interesting country but we had to keep moving to make Durban (and the test match for Stu!) for Christmas.
Spending time with Beyond Ourselves really brought home to me why we are doing this crazy cyling adventure, it is not just for fun and is something I will think about next time I get fed up when we have to cycle up another hill in 35 degree heat!
Can a wine-tasting tour of Burgundy count as a warm up ride Stuart?
Yes, apparently it can! So, we decided to spend two nights with Tom Kevill Davies aka The Hungry Cyclist at his new lodge near Beaune - www.thehungrycyclist.com This turned out to be a great idea for several reasons; Tom is really lovely, interesting and knows lots about the local area, wine, food, cycling etc. The lodge is a lovely old mill house (which sleeps 10), with beautiful gardens, a swimming pool, and gorgeous views across the vineyards in Auxey-Duresses. The food and wine are obviously amazing. Possibly more importantly for us it turned out that Tom cycled up the Mekong River a few years ago and so he was able to give us lots of advice. He even found his old map of Laos which he kindly gave us and a great contact (a Canadian restauranteur!) in Luang Prabang! His advice to get on a boat along the river in North Laos seems very sensible to me, especially when he told us how hilly and rough the roads are there. Stu has said I am in charge of the Asia section...
Although Adam Smith delved into religion in his 1776 Wealth of Nations, mainstream economists have historically stayed clear. This has recently changed[i] and as I cycled through the Holy Land back in April with fellow economist & stoker Mike Biggs, we reflected on whether economics can be used to analysis religious activity and, perhaps more interestingly, whether religion can help to explain regional differences in economic development[ii]