Monday, October 16, 2006

Interesting week. Went to see Dervla Murphy, Irish travel writer extraordinaire, speaking at Sheffield’s [now 10 yr old] literary festival, Off the Shelf. Dervla cycled from Ireland to India, via Afghanistan, through the bitter winter of 1963, wrote a book about it, Full Tilt, and has carried on writing and cycling ever since.

I have an original copy, now 40 yrs, old of that book because Dervla’s exploits, mostly on a bicycle, have been an unattainable yardstick for my own cycling travels. She has just returned from a 2nd solo trip to Siberia (age 75), having carelessly left her bicycle (Pushkin) there. And has now signed my book!! Like’s a drink too; she had a pint of Boddingtons at her elbow throughout the book signing.

My own cycling efforts have been more prosaic. For Lake Baikal, read Rother Valley Country Park & the Chesterfield Canal.

For the BAM railway through Siberia, read Trans Pennine Trail through North East Derbyshire. 13 miles; legs still attached.

1 comment:

Frankie @ Veg Plot said...

I loved her descriptions of the Afgans (can't remember which book that was in). I also enjoyed Josie Dew's first book - from a strictly armchair point of view.