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Julian

Hi I’m Julian, I was born in East London almost 24 years ago.  Currently I reside in Essex but will soon be traversing the globe by bicycle.  I’ve grown up riding bikes of all kinds, living on the doorstep of Epping Forest meant mountain biking was written into my DNA.

Growing up in a family of Architects and travelling junkies I have been truly fortunate to have traveled extensively through the Middle East at a very young age. These experiences combined with a curiosity for the world led me to study geography at UCL. It was an amazing experience and stretched my mind in many different directions, including a sustainable food festival that I helped to organise last month.

Having completed uni I was adamant that I would not walk straight into a ‘proper’ job having gone directly from school into university but also I think because I had absolutely no idea of what I wanted to do. So I became a courier in London for a while before working in a bike shop, I sense a theme here.

Working in the shop was frustrating and led me to think about getting away as far as possible.  I hadn’t really encountered bike touring before other than seeing, normally couples, riding fully loaded bikes in a contented manner throughout Europe. So when I came across Cass Gilbert and Peter Gostelow something clicked, to cycle across the world carrying everything you needed, camping wild and being almost entirely self sufficient was a to me the beacon of freedom.

Fast forward quite a few months and I have a cycling companion and probably the best guy (read just as nuts!) I could go with. So the trip, it’s so hard to comprehend what it will be like, the enormity of it is something that I’ve struggled, and probably will continue to, get my head around.  I think it will involve such a mix of emotions, which I think cycle touring is all about.  Pushing yourself into the unknown, dealing with situations as they come and with limited resources, experiencing crushing lows but above all the riding the exhilarating highs.

People talk about life changing experiences and I have tried to think whether I will be a different person when I come back without reaching a conclusion. So I’m going to try and approach this trip as an amazing adventure that I will never forget rather than a journey of enlightenment.

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