Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Night train South

Wake from a long uninterrupted sleep, the best form of recovery, breakfast outside in the early morning sun with other guests from the house, some from a few days ago but most, by now, new arrivals passing through on their own travels.
Walk through the town with Thomas and Gunter, now on their way back to Germany returning as Pilgrim's after their long trek north, Oslo to Trondheim. The day passes slowly, backpack already checked, tickets checked, plans for home finalised, wandering thoughts filled with constant reflections of the last few days, that idea about returning to the place you started from to know it for the first time, experiences count for everything, for what you become by them.

Early evening, by now the house falling more silent to the last few travellers and guests, one last strong black coffee, one last look around before leaving to walk through the town to the train station, on the far edge of town close to the harbour, town on one side, facing out to the open sea to the west on the other. One last look back, to remember the moment that was so inviting on arrival a few days before.

Platform 4, Trondheim station, 22.30pm, forty minutes before departure, the last night train south to Oslo, window facing west towards a dark grey sky, heavy rain and an empty lifeless platform. The guard checks everything is in order, bike stowed in the luggage car, night pack issued, blanket, pillow and neck cushion.

Seven hours of constant, rhythmic motion rolling back south, the silhouette of distant horizons always visible through the night, as they have been throughout every moment of every day. Arrive in Oslo, disembark to find the bike returned safely to the platform by the guard, to then retrace every step from just a few days before, it always seems odd, for time to move more slowly when returning, more slowly than time seems to pass when heading out to new horizons.

'Arctic 1000' - 1000 miles, solo, unsupported, 6 days & 1 night, riding from
Oslo to the Arctic Circle 66.33N - always heading north. 

For Aiden Mitchell 'Child of Courage Award' and Action Medical Research for all the good things that have and will continue to come out of their work.

''it's never too late to start something new or to find a different route, your own road, to choose to do the things that make you happy, that make you feel alive, to seek fulfilment and dare to risk, to take a chance in finding your own new horizons...''

 - 2018 exact date to be confirmed - Istanbul heading west, around 3000 miles -

"vend mot vinden og velg å ikke gi inn!"

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