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Traveling the world on two wheels February 3, 2009 at 5:43 pm by Alan Wechsler, staff writer
With meetings being held about improving cycling in both Albany and along the Champlain Canal, this may be a good time to reflect upon those who have embraced the bicycle as a way of life. I speak of Tim and Cindie Travis, an Arizona couple who have spent more than five years touring around the world on their bicycles.
The Travises are professional cyclists. They are able to support their adventures by selling books about their trip and advertising on their web site, www.downtheroad.org. They don’t make much, but make it last by traveling through cheap countries in Asia and South America, eating like locals and sleeping in tents or in the houses of friends they make along the way.
They’re poised to start a journey across America, which may stretch their budget.
The couple is now staying in Yuma, Arizona and preparing for the American leg. Their time here has made for some interesting interactions, as Tim Travis reported in an email today:
“Bike commuters are rare to non existent in this town and our riding instead of driving a car always causes quite a commotion … Some cannot believe life is possible without a car. One man told me it was, ‘Un-American not to drive like a normal person’ and another well meaning man, assuming I had a DUI (drunk driving), told me, ‘With a good lawyer you can get your license back.’ Sometimes I feel like a stranger in my own country.”
I had the pleasure of spending a week with them while biking through Cambodia in December, 2004. I haven’t seen them since, but I’ve kept in touch, and hope to host them when they roll through Albany sometime in the next year or so.
In the meantime, anybody interested in bicycle travel might consider picking up one or both of the Travis’ books. The couple is now selling them over the Internet at half-price, so now’s a great time to buy. They are not professional writers, but their stories are both inspiring and instructive about a world few of us see.
I have used several brands of bicycle panniers and
highly recommend Ortlieb.
See Why I switched to Ortlieb waterproof Panniers?
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