The B&W photos in this update (including the banner image that you can always see by clicking the title of the post) are some of my older work. Only the last colour photo was taken during this trip, in Denmark.
The title refers to a poem I read in the Reinheimen National Park back in Norway. It has stayed with me ever since:
He has no time to stop
And no time to look.
People he meets are none
Of his personal business.
Numerous the things to manage,
Hurry is the way of life,
Obligations around every bend.
The more he does the more there is.
The day is at an end.
Stumbling over his stick
He asks what life has given,
And what after all is left.
Thus he hurried through life
And never reached his end.
The joy that followed his track
Was a shadow lost in his wake.
— Jan-Magnus Bruheim
While someone who takes five years for a bike trip is surely not the 'target audience' for this poem, there is nevertheless much to learn here for me.
Sometimes I focus too much on photography, blogging, time-lapse videos and other digital activities. Although I love creating all of those and they help to finance the trip, they mustn't come at the cost of stopping to see, feel and experience. It would be a tragedy to cycle around the world with an air of self-centred hurry - never paying attention to the moments, chances, people and life fleeting past.
It’s easier - much easier - to be present for your life during a journey like this, but it still doesn’t happen automatically.
So I do need to pay attention to the balance between doing things and being here. I don’t know what the right balance looks like, it’s just something I will be figuring out along the way. Lately I’ve shot very few time-lapses, and next I may try posting blog updates less often. Don't worry, I won't stop doing either of those entirely. I just need to make sure these things don’t become more important than the actual trip itself.
In somewhat related news, I have been joined by a Swedish bicycle tourer called Isabelle who is pedalling south with her Cocker Spaniel Kira. She is a super social and talkative morning person, while I... am not. So we may not endure each other for very long. But on the other hand, she also has plenty of time and travels very slow. She doesn’t care about the destination, only the journey. Which is precisely the right attitude for this kind of travel.
And it could be nice to have some company for a change.