Safe to say I haven’t been this honored to be in the presence of such rockstars in a long, long time. Possibly ever. So much wisdom in their blogs, too!
The WOW Wall is created by Loretta Henderson, solo touring cyclist extraordinaire, who, curiously enough, grew up in the same small town in Connecticut where I learned to ride a bike. Loretta writes:
“I am convinced despite having only met 3 so far that solo women traveling alone by bicycle are growing in numbers, after all some of the best bicycle touring books have been written by women on wheels, Dervla Murphy, Josie Dew and the late, great remarkable Anne Mustoe to name just a few. Therefore, I am putting a shout out to all the ladies who have ventured off alone by bicycle to connect and share your experiences for cycling solo as women is a unique celebration in it’s self. Have you cycled a day ride solo? Has your partner stayed home and you ventured off alone? Entered a cycling race perhaps? Or undertaken a bicycle tour near home or overseas? Please send photos, blogs, suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here are a few highlights:
LATEST NEWS: ….from WOW (Women On Wheels)
“My name’s Baerbel, I’m a world cyclo-bum from Austria. I want to ride my bike, cook one-pot meals on wood fires and sleep under the stars in my hammock. I did not plan my route ahead of time. The important thing for me isn’t “where to?” but “how to?”. I find my equipment at second hand stores. I don’t take airplanes. I recycle and reuse everything. I find food in nature and in the dumpsters of supermarkets. In 3 years, 3 months, I’ve made it almost around the world, cycling on land and hitchhiking on sailing boats across the oceans…Many smiles and bike-love!” baerbel (Barbara Graf)
“My month of cycling Sulawesi was BLISS………and I am already planning to return for more next year! Who KNEW there were so many women out there doing this? I plan on forwarding your ‘WOW wall’ to all my friends and family who think I’m nuts! THANKS for providing this forum!” Maureen from Canada
“I love cycling! The soothing rhythm of the pedals, a fresh breeze in my face, the ground beneath, the sky above and the ´´now´´. It has taken me 4200km from my hometown of Zadar, Croatia to the very south of Iran. I am proud to be a WOW (women on wheels)!” Jelena Sosa
“I am a 66 year old lady who started cycling touring when I retired at 60. I loved the challenge, adventure, achievement, different cultures. I love being out of my comfort zone, living with strangers and camping. My touring days started and haven’t finished.” Janice Small´s tours include England, India, Nepal, and India.
“I think our life is so special and we have to do things that make us happy. To see more girls doing the same, for me is good, It give´s me more courage to go and go.” Brazilian AdaCordeiro (spanish website) after several tours in Europe, is planning to explore South America solo by bike.
“What I like most is being away from it all. It needs to be quiet and peaceful, a campfire, the nature, millions of stars, a bite to eat (I am always hungry), a nice person to talk to, my bike, my tent and a big adventure ahead of me.” Heike Pirngruber
“I used to solo tour and lead bike tours back in the 70´s. I just started to get back into biking. When I turned 60 I did a solo bike tour of Taiwan.” Rosie
“Living on a bike is much easier and more exciting than in so called everyday life. Everyday problems usually sum up to where to sleep, what to eat, where to cycle next, cycle, visit places on the road, where to sleep again…You never know what will happen, whom you will meet, where you will end up at the end of the day. That is why I love cycling solo!” Ewa Swiderska
“Starting at the end of May I too will be WOW! Thanks For being my inspiration on two wheels!” Artsy Wheels
(this image by the very talented touring cyclist Alina. Check out her project at: www.artsywheels.wordpress.com)