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Smelling the roses


On any trip many of us suffer from what in the airline industry they call '' getthereitis''. Broken down to mean ''get there at any cost or as quickly as possible''. In doing so we can often miss what there is to see and experience along the way.


On occasion I am as guilty as anyone. A good example would be my bike ride from Spain to Norway. I had just headed north from Montpellier on the south coast of France heading inland for Valance. The weather forecast wasn't great and I was cycling in a rush to beat the storms that were due to arrive mid to late afternoon. In doing so I had my head down and arse up as I pedalled at a quick (ish) pace. Unbeknown to me, my route that day took me within a few miles of one of the most photographed aqueducts in France (Pont du Gard).


https://www.avignon-et-provence.com/en/monuments/pont-gard-aqueduct



Focused as I was on ''getting there'' I must've turned a blind eye to the multitude of signs directing tourists to the aqueduct. It wasn't until that evening, when I was doing some research for my daily blog did I realise what a view I had missed. It is possibly one of the small negatives in relying on electronic navigation and not maps. You focus on the minutia and not the larger picture.


Taking the time to smell the roses, absorb your surrounds and engaging with the people who you meet is often key to making the experience you are having a more fulfilling one.


From that day onwards it's a mantra of mine to make sure I don't repeat the exercise.


It was therefore with some glee that I took receipt from Nick W-W a map (see below ) which details sights and routes for cyclists in Great Britain. For example it wasn't until I looked at the map that it reminded me I'd basically be riding over Hadrians Wall as I left Scotland and crossed into England .