I will turn 50 in 2010. I've read stuff over the last several years about how 50 is the new 35 or some such nonsense but haven't really paid that much attention to it until very recently. I've decided that it simply isn't true. 50 is 50 and 35 is 35. They are different ages. Anybody who is still trying to do the things at 50 as they did them at 35 is probably deluding themselves. But that doesn't mean a 50 year old is ready for a rocking chair and nursing home.
When I turned thirty, back in the stone age, I told myself that I was not going to look back at my 20's and yearn for the good old days. Instead, I was going to enjoy the the things about being 30 something that were not possible for a 20 something. For me that meant having more money, a career, watching the family grow and just generally being an adult. The 40's brought their own good things as well as the beginning of that long process of growing old. You ache more at 40 than you ever thought you could at 30 after even moderate exercise and injuries take longer to heal. However, there is a greater sense of accomplishment in doing something as well because it is so much harder to to it at 40. You are also smarter at 40 than you are 30 and exponentially more competent at 40 than you ever dreamed of being at 20 so you can accomplish more at work and take a greater satisfaction in what you do. That more than makes up for the declining physical prowess.
Thus, I have decided that next summer, the summer of 2010, I am going to try and take a long bicycle tour. I am going to try and ride from Hong Kong to Shanghai. Because my Putonghwa is abysmal I will probably need a partner who speaks Chinese. It probably won't be my wife since she does not ride a bike though I might can talk her into it.
I am planning to link this ride to some charitable activity; probably associated with the school I work for. I don't have to have a charitable link for this and the major purpose of doing this is to do it. But the charity aspect doesn't hurt.
This blog is my first step in preparing for this trip. It will be where I post my updates on the preparation for the trip. I will also post articles here that put forth my opinions on bicycle touring and how a good touring bike should be setup. Since most bicyclist are not tourist and don't really even know what a touring bike is I hope to help the neophyte tourist avoid some common pitfalls of touring. Things I learned the hard way.
The next post: Why a year early?
Until Next Time
The Blogger going on a Bicycle Tour to Shanghai