Dan's Singaroundiceland cycle tour – finished but not over!
Hello all! Yes, I'm back.. and yes, I finished! 3000km, 3000 photos and £3000 raised (and counting..) but the story isn't over yet. Collecting money is the Devil's own job, hence my silence on this page since my return! To keep you amused, here's an article I wrote for the Reykjavik Grapevine (published online two weeks ago, thank you!) I hope to have more time to write a fuller account on here once the fundraising's done, but in the meantime, here's a preview of the tour as a whole. Take care, thanks for reading, cheers for your support, and I promise to continue to entertain, inform and amuse again soon! Dan
Finished! 3000km in seven weeks!
Singing around Iceland – a cyclist's guide to the friendliest parts of Iceland
How to beat those Saturday Morning blues – become your own one-man travelling circus
Ever get those days where you find it difficult to get going, to start something you know you'll enjoy once you've just taken that first step? Ever found you've lost sight of what you enjoy in life and you can't remember how to go about finding it again? I know, Welcome to my world... I'm sure we've all been there. So what do you do about it? Phone a friend? Ignore it, carry on as before and hope it'll sort itself out? Bite the bullet and go to therapy? Start drinking? How about setting yourself a challenge that you have to rise to fulfil, kickstart your higher synapses again? How about cycling round Iceland for two months for charity?
Down to Olafsvík from the south of Snæfellsnes
There's nothing like making someone a promise to get me going. So when I said I'd be taking a career break for three months, cycling over 1500km (it ended up as 3000km) round Iceland for two charities in August / September and trying to cadge food and bed by singing for my supper each night, most thought I was nuts. Some knew me a bit better and knew damn well I was nuts, but secretly thought I'd manage it anyway. I'd come here last year on a choir exchange with Kvennakór Kópavogs (Ladies choir of Kópavogur) for a wonderful mad weekend of singing, sightseeing, drinking and laughter, but I'd known since I was very young that sometime I was going to explore this strange, remote, exotic world for myself. Coming back also gave me the chance to do something for the people that had helped me – I found out many of Kvennakór had been helped by Ljósið Endurhæfing, one of the charities I was supporting, so I'd be giving something back too. But this was just as much a trip for myself – to see a world I'd spent hours reading, dreaming of; to be cycling, unsupported, for seven weeks through mindblowing, challenging scenery – and to drive myself to reawaken something asleep within me and give me the boost I needed.
Stapafell, a mere 500m pimple below Snæfellsjökull
Two months is a long time, and regardless of currency fluctuations this would be an expensive trip. I was going to take a tent, but not only does the wind blow and the rain fall in Iceland, it can snow in September – I'd need other places to stay, I'd need equipment, spares, food, LOTS of food.. I'd be spending a lot of money at a time when I wasn't actually getting paid for anything. And I thought again about the Kvennakór. Maybe if I was riding for charity, and an Icelandic one at that, people might put me up for the night. What could I give them in return? Bringing fifty expensive, heavy presents wasn't an option. How about singing for them? Giving a solo concert in return for bed and board.. could it work? Would the Kvennakór know enough people around Iceland to get me round? Maybe not, but their friends might.. and hey, if I needed a catchy hook to get the media interested (and potential hosts), then singaroundiceland.com was it!
Dusk, heading for Viðidal, northwest Iceland
Carry on to find out more about my ride around Iceland... (next page)