Monday, February 19, 2007

somewhere i have never travelled gladly

My favourite epidemiologist in the whole world sent me an interesting email today. Some folks associated with the U of T Centre for the Environment are organizing a cycling trip through Russia, China and Mongolia in August/Sept 2007. (See below for a few more details).

Oh my God that's tempting. The contract I'm on runs out in September and in theory I could just leave early and head to Russia! Somewhere I have never travelled. I'm not all that convinced the tour would raise much awareness about the environment (I think sending emails and letters to your local politicians and annoying the hell out of them would be more effective), but then there's the whole "how much suffering can I take" aspect - what could be worse, and more personally satisfying, than cycling through the Gobi desert?

Picture from Wildcat Bike Tours in Scotland. These should be the Khangai mountains on the edge of the Gobi desert.

A group of enthusiastic individuals is looking for other potentially
interested individuals to join them on a cycling trip across Russia,
Mongolia and China during the months of August and September 2007
(partial trips are possible). The intent is to raise awareness about
environmental issues. This unique and challenging life-changing
adventure requires no special level of cycling and/or traveling
experience. All are welcomed to join, men and women, beginner or
experienced cyclists

Highlights found on the itinerary include the world's deepest lake
(Baikal in Russia), 3 world-renowned centers of culture (Moscow,
St-Petersburg and Beijing), the daunting Gobi desert and the vast open
territory of Mongolia (most sparsely populated country on earth), the
world's most populous country and one of its fastest growing economies
(China), riding beside the camels and the horses in Mongolia, and
amidst the millions of Chinese cyclists in Beijing.

Additional information available by contacting Damien A. Côté
(University of Toronto graduate student) at damien.cote [at]

And as a "p.s." I'm probably going to give my Kona Dew Deluxe to my younger brother. He lives in Peterborough and is getting motivated to join the ranks of urban warrior cyclists.
The good news with giving away a bike is that it means I have space for a NEW one, and once again I'm daydreaming about cyclocross bikes. Thank God the Toronto Bike Show is right around the corner.


Melissa said...

You're updating again. yay! :) Both blog titles are very familiar to me. Been reading e.e. cummings? I've been thinking about choosing one of his poems as my tattoo.

selsine said...

Yeah e.e. does rule, i sing of Olaf glad and big, has to be one of my favourite poems ever.

Now as for cycling across Russia, China, and Mongolia...well you have to do it. I mean if it works out for you financially, romantically, and with your job, then you just have to. It's a once in a lifetime type of a trip that would be amazing.

Totally dangerous and stuff like that, but still...very cool.