Passion & Dedication

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Types of wall

It is always so incredible, no matter how well you think that you have researched something or covered all of your bases, you always miss something. We had spent two weeks along the wall prior to our trip and we were convinced the knowledge of our journey was there, how wrong I was just about to be proven. I was aware that we had a large bit of desert to cross, in the Gansu province, maybe 1000km plus, fairly flat Gobi desert, not so bad. I...

A dream without the isolation of sleep

Years and then months of intense planning, and finally I have not only taken the first steps of our journey, but a week has already passed, over 200km of intense desert terrain. It would be difficult to ever encapsulate what has been going through my mind, the feeling of joy, elation and the scene of adventure, times of doubt, knowing every step that I take is opening a new world, not only for myself, but for the children that are going to benefit from this....

The Great Wall

The word “Chang Cheng” Became one of my most used in China, as well as one of the first that I learned to say. This was the Chinese word for the wall, which if translated literary means endless structure of some 10 000 Li in length (1 Li is equivalent to 500m). Thus the perceived distance of the wall being some 5000 km. As we progressed with our journey, our phrase then quickly changed to “Nali yo Chang Cheng” Which means, "where is the wall?" No...

Departure from Cape Town

The flat was filled with the drone of busy excited voices, the door buzzer had not stopped for the past hour. No one was really talking about the reason for our gathering, but the body language was there. Every time I would make eye contact with Lizelle my wife and any of my children there would be a rush of emotions that I would try any suppress as not to upset any of them. Why? our lives are build around emotions. Get them out there,...

To persevere

When do you call it a day? What does it take to finally break your spirit and you decide to just sit back and let things go by? Fall back into your rut and be satisfied with what is going on around you, that your effort, was so small it would of not made any difference anyway as it was just too insignificant. How wrong I would have been. The days months and hours that I spent researching and organising this journey I still hear...

Start

What lies ahead of me, my journey through the middle kingdom, the 3rd biggest country, a civilisation shroud in mystic and secrecy? For hundreds of years being surrounded by the hoards of barbarians all trying to get into their land. A civilisation going back for thousands of years and a culture that has managed to survive against all odds. The mistakes of the past 60 years of communism have really shown, but china has bounced back and its economic boom has begun. With this has...

Into the sea

Friday, 17 October 2008 After 100 days on the road the final sunrise of the journey was slowly edging its way across the sky, splashing colour into the drab dusk, burning away the morning chill in the sea air. I remember standing in front of the estuary at Kosi Bay and briefly thanking John for the months of dedication that he had put in seeing that we remained hydrated and fed on the road. There was a quiet rise of emotional feeling beginning to build up,...

Zululand and on

Tuesday, 07 October 2008 Since Durban we have had a mental battle trying to keep focused and dragging our bodies day after day along the north coast freeways, zig-zagging between busy roads all heading up north to the border, dodging flying pieces of sugar cane, taxis and fighting the head on north wind only occasionally hitting the beach, some days our route has taken us way inland that I have felt I was going to see the west coast again. From a visual point we...

Hope in Thyme

Monday, 06 October 2008 The ancient Greeks used it in their baths and burnt it as incense in their temples, believing that thyme was a source of courage. I can now count the days on one hand, the end of this journey is so close, but still far to go. Each day is as hard as they have ever been and as well as this, the distance has added to the continuous pain in my legs. They hurt as we are pushing each day just that little...

Children of the soil

Tuesday, 30 September 2008 I can distinctly remember as a child the special feeling that one got playing in the soil, digging into it until your finger nails were caked with the black soil. Eating handfuls of the sand and loving each brain shattering crunch as your teeth splinter the tiny granules. Sitting, dazed and in a trance watching the sand running through my fingers, or the feeling one gets when you burrow deep into the cold sand with your feet, wriggling your toes in it....