Tuesday, 21 December 2010

Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future

This time last year, on 21 December 2009, I was busy making my way from Thabazimbi in the North West province to a little town called 'Rooiberg'.
Thinking back now, it surprises me that I remember it so vividly. I can remember exactly what I felt, the surroundings, what the road looked like, the weather...every detail.



As I left from Thabazimbi aka 'Thaba' (as the locals call it), I stopped off about 10 km out of town at the turn off to Rooiberg for something to drink and a smoke. Yes...a smoke. I'm sure a lot of people were baffled at the fact that I cycled between 80 and 100 kilometers everyday and smoking whilst doing so.

Yes, not the healthiest or most exemplary of habits, but we all have our vices.
I'm not in the business of saving the world...just Africa. ;-)

As I stood there next to the road, watching cars, bakkies, buses and trucks drive by...an eagle swooped down to pick up some road kill conveniently lying in the middle of the road. A lizard that had fallen victim to human beings' engine driven comfortable modes of transport.

I was excited to have an eagle in arm's reach, yet nervous for the poor thing trying to time it just right, as to not share the lizard's fate.

It was a long day, but I felt so happy. Just Luna (My bike) and I, sharing the open road, surrounded by nature's beauty in all it's splendor.
That night I stayed at a rather 'upmarket' lodge called 'Tilodi Lodge'...filled with tourists. I stayed in a 'luxury tent'...which was fabulous!



I remember the feelings I had. Feelings of contentment, joy, achievement and peace.
And with the splendid sunset, surrounded by nature and all the beautiful animals...how could I but not feel this way.



That was one year ago today. Time flies!!

As my followers know, I was planning on setting off in February 2011 on my journey to becoming the first woman to circumnavigate the entire African continent on a bicycle.

The last year has been focussed on discovery and learning.
Discovering the true drive behind my passions and dreams. And learning more about myself.
When I got back home from my trip around South Africa...I had decided to cancel the trip around Africa. In all honesty, that decision was made to appease my nearest and dearest who felt I needed to 'settle down' and not chase after lofty dreams.

But, as I would discover, one cannot deny that which lies deep within your being.

It was in July 2010, whilst sick in bed (or rather on Hanret's couch) watching the Tour de France that it hit me.
Cycling around Africa is what I want to do, it is my dream...seemingly impossible to others or not...I have to do what I have to do. I could not allow others' fears to keep me from living my dream any longer. I had a choice, and I made it. I chose to GO FOR IT!

From July up until now, I have spent my time planning the trip, seeking sponsors, typing up proposals, doing presentations, sending out press releases, doing interviews for radio, magazines, newspapers, planning and setting up fund raisers (with a lot of help from my awesome friends), envisioning, planning, researching...trying to make it work.

I had a fundraiser in Cape Town at the beginning of November.
I truly believed that this would give me the boost I needed towards fulfilling my dream. The event had other plans though.
It did not pan out as I had planned at all. I felt disappointed and frustrated. I allowed my disappointment to affect my performance. I wasn't on the bike as much as I should've been, I disappointed my friends, supporters...disappointed myself.

On returning home to Johannesburg or 'Jozi', I had to face some criticism (understandably) and I had to sit myself down and ask some difficult questions.

In the last month I've been on a journey of discovering what it is that drives me, what it is I aim to achieve with this expedition and what is important to me?

It has been an amazing experience of growth, learning and discovering.
And although I have discovered so much about the why, where, what, how and who...this is only the beginning.
Three years after initially having taken that leap towards pursuing my dream...I now only get into the core of it all.

A lot has changed, and there's a lot of planning going on. The festive season will not be a quiet, relaxing time of year for me in any way, shape or form.

Now:
Certainties:
* I will not be leaving in February 2011
* I will cycle around Africa, launching in the near future
* I am not giving up on my dream
* Planning is in progress
* There is a plan

Uncertainties:
* I don't know exactly when I will be leaving
* I don't have it all figured out to a T yet. Maybe I never will.

On this journey of discovery I have come to realize, amongst a whole lot of other things, that there are 2 things that have never changed since I started working on fulfilling my dream in 2007.

1. Music was always going to be a part of this journey
2. I always envisioned ending the journey with a concert

So that serves as a hint to what I have in the pipeline. :)

I wish you all a very merry Christmas filled with love, laughter, joy and peace with your loved ones!

Looking forward to the new year!!!




Facebook Group
Needs List

Thursday, 09 December 2010

We are the ones we've been waiting for...

Hopi Elders' Prophecy
Oraibi, Arizona, June 8, 2000

You have been telling people that this is the Eleventh Hour, now you
must go back and tell the people that this is the Hour. And there are
things to be considered. . . .

Where are you living?
What are you doing?
What are your relationships?
Are you in right relation?
Where is your water?

Know your garden.
It is time to speak your truth.
Create your community.
Be good to each other.
And do not look outside yourself for your leader.

Then he clasped his hands together, smiled, and said, "This could be a
good time! There is a river flowing now very fast. It is so great and
swift that there are those who will be afraid.
They will try to hold onto the shore.
They will feel they are being torn apart and will suffer greatly.
Know the river has its destination.
The elders say we must letgo of the shore, push off into the middle of the river,
keep our eyes open, and our heads above the water.

And I say, see who is in there with you and celebrate. At this time in
history, we are to take nothing personally, least of all ourselves. For
the moment that we do, our spiritual growth and journey come to a halt.

The time of the one wolf is over. Gather yourselves!
Banish the word 'struggle' from your attitude and your vocabulary. All
that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.

We are the ones we've been waiting for.





Facebook Group
Needs List

Tuesday, 07 December 2010

Article in Today's Beeld Newspaper (Afrikaans)




Op haar eie wil sy Afrika op ’n fiets gaan tem

2010-12-07 08:50
Artikelopsies Deel Kry Beeld op

RIËTTE GROBLER

Jolandie Rust droom daarvan om die eerste vrou te word wat op haar eentjie op ’n fiets om Afrika ry, skryf RIËTTE GROBLER.

Wanneer Jolandie Rust (26) in Februarie 2011 die grens tussen Suid-Afrika en Namibië op haar fiets oorsteek, is sy nie van plan om terug te keer totdat sy Afrika deurkruis het nie.

Rust, ’n Johannesburger, skat dit gaan eers oor sowat 40 000 km en 34 lande en ná bykans 3 jaar wees. Teen daardie tyd wil sy haar droom van ’n soloreis reg om die vasteland verwesenlik het.

Dit was ook in die saal van haar fiets, met die naam Luna, wat sy tussen Oktober 2009 en Januarie 2010 vrou-alleen om Suid-Afrika gery het – van Johannesburg tot in Richardsbaai, al om die kus en Springbok langs terug huis toe. ’n Allemintige 5 951 km in 100 dae.

“Almal weet al, hulle kan vir my sê ek moenie ’n ding doen nie, maar ek sál as ek die besluit geneem het,” sê sy skouerophalend.

“My fiets se naam is Luna, oor my pa nog altyd sê ek’s met die maan gepla. Vriende noem my ’n sigeuner, omdat ek nie juis iemand is wat al ooit wortel geskiet het nie.”

Die fietslus het haar in Israel gepak, toe sy en ’n vriend besluit het om die land eerder op fietse as te voet te verken.

“Ons het in die middel van die somer deur die oorloggeteisterde Gasastrook gery. Ons kon nie die taal praat nie en is eendag kilometers ver deur ’n skreeuende man op ’n donkie agterna gesit,” sê sy. “Dit was dáár wat die droom begin ontkiem het om my eie land en vasteland te verken.”

Nou is daar ’n groot regmerkie langs “Suid-Afrika” op haar lys van doendinge en die volgende avontuur wag.

“My soloreise deur Suid-Afrika het my geleer waartoe ek op ’n fiets in staat is en het my laat besef dit is moeilik om te sê wat onmoontlik is,” sê sy.

“Ek het wonderlike, inspirerende en vrygewige mense ontmoet. Die boodskap was duidelik: ander glo in my, bloot omdat ek die moed het om daad by my woord te voeg. Ek het hul lewe geraak en hulle myne en ek het geweet dít is ’n boodskap wat ek oor ons landsgrense wou neem.”

Rust glo sy kan vrou-alleen ’n bewys wees dat enige doelwit haalbaar is. Sy is van plan om ’n groot bohaai oor die Millennium-ontwikkelingsdoelwitte op te skop, veral wat armoede-verligting teen 2015 betref.

“Luna dui ook op die lig wat ek op sogenaamde ‘donker’ Afrika se probleme wil skyn. Dit help nie mense gooi net geld nie, hulle moet die moue oprol en aan probleme wérk,” sê sy.

Met ’n bietjie Portugees, Frans en die Swahili wat sy van plan is om onder die knie te kry, glo sy kommunikasie sal nie onmoontlik wees nie.

Dit is egter veral met ’n djembe-drom, haar gunsteling-instrument, wat sy beoog om oor die taalgrens heen met mense te kommunikeer.

“Ek wil met my aankoms in dorpies op die drom speel om aan te kondig ek is daar,” sê dié vreeslose, doodkalm dromer.


Riëtte Grobler is ’n joernalis van Buite.

Jolandie Rust beplan al die laaste paar jaar aan haar solofietsrit om Afrika. Foto: Herman Verwey

Help Jolandie
Hoewel Jolandie Rust haar fietstoer onder die Trots Suid-Afrikaans-vaandel aanpak, moet sy self borge werf en gaan daar geen ondersteuningspan saam nie.
Geen wonder sy soek nog ondersteuning nie.
Kontak haar by jolandie.rust@gmail.com as jy wil help, en volg haar blog, http://jolandie-rust.blogspot.com.



Facebook Group
Needs List

Monday, 06 December 2010

From a single matchstick to offices



On 12 June 2006, Telana Simpson embarked on, what might have seemed, a CRAZY idea!

She is trading a single matchstick...for offices!
The idea is to keep trading items up in perceived value, until she secures offices to run her training and coaching business from. When she gets her offices, she will be contributing some space to mentoring a start-up entrepreneurial enterprise, and helping them give their dream life

********************************************************************

I first met Telana on the day I completed my trip around South Africa. It was at my
'Welcome Home' party that she handed me a single matchstick. At first I didn't quite know what to make of it. Until I saw that there was something written on the matchstick. This tiny little matchstick represented something...

It represented innovation, possibility, belief, creativity...and I was intrigued.

Over the last year I've become good friends with Telana. I have learned a great deal from her and she has inspired not only me...but every single person that crosses her path.

It is now just over 4 years down the line and the trades she has made has been:

A matchstick
For a pen
For a toy frog
For two books
For two cases of wine
For a holiday in Utopia nature reserve
For R3000 cash
For a hot-air balloon flight
For a party for 150 people
For 375 Springleap T-shirts....


NOW...she only has 140 Tshirts left!!!!

People have blogged about her, written articles about her, interviewed her on radio...she is a true Mover and Shaker!! ;)

Recently she organized the first SWARM party in Africa to unlock the Super Swarm badge through the nifty application FOURSQUARE.
She has organized countless different trades as 'three-way' trades for the Super Cool Springleap T-Shirts. Including tickets to shows, rock climbing lessons, photo shoots, parties, henna tattoos, design competitions....the list goes on.

Through all of this, she has inspired and helped so many people to reach for their own dreams.



So, if you'd like to be part of the Onematchstick Revolution, contact Telana Simpson and trade with her for one of the remaining Springleap T-shirts! There are only 140 left!!!

Also check out her BLOG for current offers!

Facebook Group

Needs List

Thursday, 25 November 2010

Taking Old Faithful



I have decided to take Luna, my 'old' bike on this expedition.
At first I thought it almost 'unfair' to put her through having to carry myself and all my gear right around Africa. Seeing as I've already put her through having to carry myself and all my gear through and around South Africa.

And in all honesty, I wasn't sure whether she'd be up to going around the second largest continent on this planet.

But, after much consideration, (and a lack of finding a bike sponsor) I have now decided to take my 'Old Faithful' with me on this trip.
I will be taking her to my favorite cycling shop, Linden Cycles, to have them take her apart, clean and replace whatever needs cleaning and replacing. I might have to make a few adjustments and change something here and there...but overall I am very happy to take her.

I love this bike. We've been through so much together. And it only seems fitting that we tackle this, my biggest undertaking yet, together. I've never had any problems with this bike. She's a very hard worker and always willing to go wherever I want her to. No complaints, no hesitation. :)

So my dear friends...I give you Luna, my sole companion on this trip!

(She is a Corratec, Superbow Race Mountainbike)


Facebook GroupNeeds List

Thursday, 18 November 2010

The Elephant



The other day I had a fabulous chat with Sarah Outen, all the way over in London in the UK.

She asked me a question.
She asked me about my background on my blog. The Elephant.
I then realized that it is something I haven't actually explained. Because there is a reason for that particular background.

Elephants actually play a rather significant role in my life. I don't even know if I've ever told my friends about it.
To me the elephant symbolizes - Strength, Wisdom, and power of the feminine...be it that the females are the leaders in the herd. (Matriarchal)

I have always loved elephants. Growing up, we had an elephant's foot in our house. (Maybe a bit disgusting I know)
But as a child, I was absolutely fascinated with that foot. (Ok so I've never claimed to be all that 'normal') :D

When my 'adventure-self' had the opportunity to 'come out of the closet' the first time...six years ago, it was the elephant that got me through some really tough times. I can recall one particularly tough moment (like one of those moments where you think...this is it...I'm not gonna make it...it's over) where we were busy cycling through Israel. We'd been cycling all day in semi-desert terrains in 47deg Celsius heat...and we had ONE more mountain to climb. We'd run out of water, food, money, smokes, light...and even enthusiasm.

My partner turned to me and said: "How do you eat an elephant"?
I thought the dehydration had got to him!
And he answered: "Piece by piece".
And that little piece of wisdom got me through to the end and is still a source of motivation to me to this day!

Since then, my journey...on the road and off, has been filled with the symbol of the elephant.

Interesting fact: In just about EVERY home, hotel, guest-house, lodge that I've stayed in on my trips through and around South Africa...there's been an elephant. Either a statue or a painting or a fountain etc. And that has always made me feel...safe. It's a very reassuring symbol to me.

The bike I rode on from Johannesburg to Cape Town on my trip around South Africa was named "Gaja"...which is Indonesian for 'elephant'.

I definitely hope that I will come across one of these majestic creatures on my journey around Africa!!
In a way, I do see the spirit of the elephant in me...

Facebook Group
Needs List

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Regroup

So 'Stuck on the Bike' has come and gone. Hanret, Hvir and I are back home safe and sound.

There are a few things I took from the experience.

1. Not many people put their money where their mouths are
2. I need to step up my game and be more committed
3. I want to live in Cape Town (it is just such a beautiful city!)
4. I need to rethink my strategy
5. Hvir is a great swimmer...but don't push it!


How I came to these conclusions:

1. Based on how many people indicated their 'attendance' for the event, we should have raised at least R14 000. I raised less than R1 000. And that wasn't even from the individuals that said they'd donate.
Somehow I can't help but blame myself. I have been doing this for quite a while now and know by now just how things work. If 100 people say they will attend, you can count on maybe 10% actually doing so. But somehow, I always want to believe that 'this time it will be different'.

2. I was deeply disappointed with a number of things surrounding the event. But that is no excuse to lay slack! Shit happens...and it happens for a reason. I need to step up my game and not allow minor set backs to let me lay slack. It is in these instances, especially, that I need to step it up and push even harder. I am disappointed in myself as well. But have built a bridge and got over it.

3. When I arrived in Cape Town for the very first time in 2008, it was on a bicycle. I didn't get to see much of the city then. I saw some of it. But I wasn't too fond of Cape Town. This time, I had a brilliant guide, seeing as Hanret lived in Cape Town for a long time. And this was the very first time I was in Cape Town with a car, and not on my bicycle! :D Walking on the beach with Hvir playing in the sand, the glorious Table Mountain standing tall, majestically hugging her surroundings. It is just so unbelievably beautiful. I seriously get butterflies in my tummy when I look at the mountain. There's something magical about this city. And I will live there when I get back from Africa. It is where I will start and finish this journey...and it is where I plan on carrying on with the next...

4. Since we arrived back home, I've had to seriously rethink my strategy. I have been receiving a number of messages and lots of input from friends and fans alike, expressing opinions on my 'failed' fundraiser.
It's been very taxing, emotionally. But a great learning experience.
I have to make quite a few decisions, and I have to do so soon. Time is running out, February is right around the corner. I have taken some time-out...come next week it's all systems go again. I am not backing down in any way, shape or form. But I am taking the necessary time to make an informed decision.

5. Hvir, my sweetest 'little' mascot...loves swimming. She is also just crazy about the beach. Watching her play in the sand and run into the ocean after her ball...is a thing of beauty. Though I also need to sometimes assess the currents!!! LoL :D
The day before we drove back to Johannesburg, we went for one last walk on the beach late afternoon. With one last throw, I threw the ball in quite deep. The specific point where I threw the ball in for Hvir to fetch...is where the lagoon and the ocean come together. I didn't realize there'd be such a strong current. Needless to say, poor little Hvir got the fright of her life...and so did I. She went in after her ball...but simply wasn't coming back. It was when she seemed to get smaller and started drifting away that I went in after her, with Hanret short on my heels. I didn't think...one doesn't think in these situations. I just wanted to get her back.

Long story short...Hvir is fine. Though my phone is not. My phone was in my pocket! It is now sleeping with the fishes! LoL
Well not quite. I still have the phone...but it is completely dead.

Hanret gave me her old phone to use in the meantime. :)

So...tomorrow is Sunday. Come Monday, I will have made up my mind on a number of issues.
There's no holding back, no time for slacking. This is it. It's now or never.

I would just like to thank Tyger Valley Shopping Centre for sponsoring the venue for Stuck on the Bike. And Virgin Active Gym in Tyger Valley for lending me one of their stationary bikes for 48 hours.

To all the people who did, in fact, come through. Thank you so much! I really really appreciate your support!

To Verity! You are an absolute superstar! Thank you for your amazing support and for being there! You rock.

And to Hanret and little Hvir, for driving me down, spending such a long time in a mall and driving back up...A HUGE, HUGE thank you!!!!

"Follow your dreams and always believe in yourself. Keep your eyes on the stars and hope in your heart." ~Anon

Facebook Group
Needs List

Saturday, 30 October 2010

Stuck On The Bike - Almost there!!

This time next week I will have spent a little over 29 hours on a stationary bike at Tyger Valley Shopping Center in Cape Town!!

The initial idea was that I would get on to a stationary bike and not stop pedaling until I had reached my target. BUT... a few difficulties surrounded that idea.

1. I might just still be on that bike this time next year!!! LoL
2. I couldn't secure a willing venue sponsor without having a set time period.

So, after a long discussion and some convincing from Hanret...I settled for 48 hours.

I was afraid that it wouldn't have the desired impact. That it wouldn't have that same WOW factor. I have since decided that I should have my head read! LoL
I guess it is because I always have to push the boundaries.
"Go big or go home" - that's how I feel.

I have worked hard at getting this together and have had a great deal of tremendous help from my amazing friends...old and new.
Friends having to go over my proposals, my press releases. Friends calling in favors to help me. Friend helping get banners designed, printed, flyers printed, paper sponsored, painting walls to raise awareness. Friends helping spread the word. Friends supporting me and encouraging me when I'm freaking out at the amount of stuff that needs to be done and thought of.

Friends - My friends...the best in the world!!!!

What needed to be done, has been done. And now...I hope. I hope people will support me and take part in helping me realize my dream. In helping Verity and her band record their future album. In helping to raise some money for charity.

In helping to make a difference.

I've been getting a particular question more often in the last week or so. At least once a day someone will ask me: "So? You excited yet?"...
I am very excited about the Africa trip. I have no doubt whatsoever that it is going to be an absolutely amazing journey and that I will achieve the goal I have set for myself.

For 'Stuck On The Bike' - I think I will start getting excited on Thursday evening/ Friday morning. Until then I am still focussed on spreading the word, making sure everything is in place, making sure I've thought of everything needed. The last few days before any big event is when I slip into 'silent mode'. I get very quiet and might even seem uninterested in everything around me. That is only because I slip into intense focus mode. Going over to do lists in my mind, thinking about the event ahead, dissecting all aspects of it.
It's like the night before you leave on holiday. You're busy packing and making sure you've made the necessary bookings, packed what you will need, filled the car's tank, checked the tyres, confirmed your accommodation etc.
Then when you get there you get to just enjoy it.

When I get there, when I'm on that bike...then I'll get to just enjoy it. :)

Clinton Poson, who sponsored me with a Camelbak, roped in his brother's help to get some banners printed for the event. He dropped them off earlier this evening and they are STUNNING!!! A huge thank you to them both!

Flyers are being printed in Cape Town. Friend got a friend to get a paper merchant to sponsor some paper and a printer to sponsor the printing. So we're having 1200 flyers printed.

The venue is sorted. The bike is sorted.
Media a bit slow on the uptake still...so I will still try and get a few people on board to help spread the word until Friday.

All is just about sorted. :) Happy days!

I even got permission to take my 'little mascot' Hvir into the shopping center!!!! LoL
So next week Hanret, Hvir and myself will be driving down to Cape Town. Mother City...Ready or not, here we come! :D

For more information:
Stuck On The Bike
Facebook Group
Verity
Hello Africa


Facebook Group
Needs List

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Stuck On Adventure!





11 Days to go for 'Stuck On The Bike'.

And only 109 Days before Launch for Africa!!!

I am getting very excited. Yes, there's still LOADS to do before 11 February...but that's okay. I know what I am capable of and I know it's going to be absolutely fantastic!!

So remember to visit: Verity's website or Hello-Africa to donate and get 2 CD's!!! And a percentage of funds raised will go towards helping a charity close to my heart. For more info also check out:
Stuck On The Bike
Facebook Group
Facebook Event

I have some exciting news, which I can't quite share just yet. But it will take this trip to a whole new level!
I am still waiting on a whole lot of potential sponsors to give me a definite 'yay' or 'nay'. I will tackle these once I get back from Cape Town and Stuck on The Bike.

We're leaving beginning of November. We're driving down. Hanret (my rock of support and one of my very best friends),Hvir (my 'little' mascot) and yours truly. Can't wait!!!! Counting down the days. And since I now have a better idea of what the venue actually looks like...I'm even more excited. It looks absolutely amazing!!!

Today is my 'creativity' day. My creative soul is shouting at me...I haven't been painting, writing, singing, drumming...in quite a while. Just been sooo busy with everything else. But that's no reason for an excuse...I know.
So today I went off with my friend Telana Simpson, the Onematchstick girl and we got creative. Paint...spray paint...wall...can only mean one thing.
Graffiti!!!!
My graffiti was done in order to promote Stuck On The Bike.
Telana's to promote her Swarm Party.

Now I'm planning on losing myself in some drumming. Oh btw...I'm taking a drum with me around Africa!! ;)

Life is good...

"Get out of the pool of fear and take a swim in the ocean of possibility" - JR

:) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :) :)

Facebook Group
Needs List

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Tick Tick Tick




Tick - clock is ticking. Just two weeks to go for Stuck On The Bike. The thought sends butterflies dancing through my tummy!!! :D

Tick - I can now tick the first item off my needs list, officially!!! Thanks to my new friend Clinton Poson, I now have a Camelbak (See photo). So if nothing else...we know I'll be hydrated on this trip!!! LoL

Most of what is needed has been put into place for Stuck On The Bike. I just need to still try get someone who'd be willing to help me out with 2 banners and a few t-shirts maybe...sound/speakers for Verity and her band for when they perform and an extra laptop for people that want to donate on the spot. Wooohooo!! Almost there! *Happy Dance, Happy Dance*

We aim on getting 8000 people to donate, so will need all the help we can get.

So if you're in Cape Town over the weekend of the 5th of November, come say hello. Meet Verity..and meet Hvir, my little mascot. ;)

Facebook Group
Needs List

Sunday, 17 October 2010

Lift Off!! :)



In Today's paper: Article

My previous trips were...ummm...not as well planned as my Upcoming Trip. ;)
So, with my trip through Israel, through South Africa and around South Africa, I never really felt the flurry of emotions I do now! It was very much a case of...get on the bike...and go. That's it. Don't think about it too much...just do it!

With only 18 days to go for Stuck on the bike and 116 days till D-Day, I find myself filled with excitement, anticipation, nervousness, happiness with a pinch of panic!!

There is SO much going on right now, it's hard to keep my head on straight at times!
Logistics, planning, gear, media, proposals, events, updates, waiting on answers, working two jobs, training (bit slack on this one...oops) :D

Talking to potential sponsors, journalists, editors, fellow adventurers, athletes, friends, supporters everyday. The amount of support people have been giving me, just puts me in a state of blissful numbness! Whenever I should feel I'm about to fall, there's always someone there to grab my hand and pull me back up! It is absolutely amazing! I am so unbelievably blessed and will never be able to adequately express my gratitude towards all those who support and love me!

A HUGE thank you to you all!!!!!

If you're on Facebook, have a look at my groups:
Jolandie Rust - Wild At Heart
Stuck On The Bike

On Twitter:
@jorusty



Facebook Group
Needs List

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Waiting Game

No, I'm not referring to either the song or the television show... ;)

I have now reached that point where, although a whole lot is going on and happening, I have to play the waiting game.
Waiting for answers, waiting for feedback, waiting for confirmation...waiting for rain. :)

Not that it's a bad thing entirely. It is just that it can get a tad frustrating at times.

Said I was taking the weekend off...which I did. Said I was going sailing...which I did. And man...did I get more than I bargained for?!?
Saturday started out with good wind, and 'moi' getting a crash course in "Sailing for dummies". :p
I am happy to report that I do not get sea sick!! Thank goodness. Even when mother nature put my 'adventurous spirit' to the test in 30 knots wind...I was as cool as a cucumber. I must admit, however, that I never realized just what hard work sailing can be! And...am thinking I like this sailing business. Might just get myself a boat! But not now...I am CYCLING around Africa after all. :D



All this 'on the water' activity have inspired me! So I have decided I should make use of the rowing machine standing in the study...all on it's own. Poor thing. I've got as far as the kitchen!! Keep getting stuck there... LoL

So I have a big important exciting meeting tomorrow morning...and hopefully the waiting game will forfeit.

Only 23 Days to go to Stuck On The Bike! Please make sure to follow the updates and if you're in Cape Town...Please come say hello!!!! I'll have a lot of time to kill!

And if you're on Facebook, feel free to join my Facebook Group: "Jolandie Rust - Wild At Heart" for more updates and tidbits. (The group has now grown to nearly 1200 members!)

Facebook Group
Needs List

Friday, 08 October 2010

Stepping It Up

I attended the first FEAT event last night in Johannesburg at the Wits University Theatre, organised by adventure racer: Lisa de Speville. And all I can say is WOW!!!! I am still on a high!! :D
FEAT stands for ---> Fascinating Expedition and Adventure Talks

12 Adventurers, speaking on a theme around their adventures, with a 7 minute time limit each. It was absolutely amazing and a roaring success!!

Knowing that I will leave on the biggest adventure of my life in just 4 months' time, excites me, makes me feel anxious, scares me a little and feels totally surreal.
But last night just got my passion running in over-drive!! :D

I got some great tips and advice from fellow adventurers, made a number of mental notes. And the one thing I realized is: Working hard is great...but next week I have to step it up!! There are still so much I have to organize and finalize...sleep in the next 4 months will be extremely limited!!

I'm giving myself this weekend to relax, gather my thoughts and plan. From Monday...there is no time for taking it easy or stalling on ANYTHING! Going away this weekend for the first time in, I don't even remember how long. Going sailing with 2 of my dearest friends. Long overdue.

So fun and relaxed weekend, then it's into over-drive. :)

Hope everybody has a wonderful weekend!


Facebook Group
Needs List

Thursday, 07 October 2010

126 Days to Go!!

With only 126 days to go to the launch of my dream (finally!), my excitement and anticipation is getting close to boiling point! :)

I still have a whole lot to do, organize and put together before D-Day.
There are, however, a few generous, caring, giving friends and supporters out there that have helped me with a few things on my Needs List:

Laurinda Werners is giving me a Leatherman multi-tool.
Clinton Poson have bought me a Camelbak Mule.
Custom made pannier racks are being made.

For the 'Stuck On The Bike' event: (with only 28 Days to go)

Tyger Valley Shopping Center is sponsoring the venue.
Virgin Active Tyger Valley is supplying me with the bike I'll be stuck on.
The event on Facebook now has 114 people 'attending' and 'maybe attending'. (I aim on getting 8000 people to support this event: to read more on how it will work click HERE)

I had an interview on the Afrikaans radio show: 'Radio Sonder Grense': You can listen to the interview online HERE.
(The dog you'll hear barking in the background, is my ridiculously adorable mascot 'Hvir'. She's a very good friend of mine's Great Dane and they will both be accompanying me to Cape Town for Stuck On The Bike) ;)

And although a number of the National South African newspapers have done stories on me, for the first time, one of the biggest papers in SA, The Sunday Times...will be publishing a story on me this Sunday! Very excited about that. Had the photographer here this morning taking pics and expressing his concerns! :D

There is a whole lot happening, though I can't really spill all the beans on account of so many pending feedbacks.

One thing is for sure though...come Friday 11 Feb 2011...I am launching from Cape Town at 11:02am. Whether I have everything I need, or not! :D




Facebook Group
Needs List

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

36 Days

36 Days to go for 'Stuck On The Bike'!

134 Days to D-Day for Africa!

The Facebook Support Group has now grown to almost 1100 members.
Stuck On The Bike supporters are now up to 100. (Though I am aiming to get 8000)

My supporting audience has now grown to, mainly, the following countries:

South Africa (of course) ;)
United Kingdom
Australia
Slovenia
Canada
Denmark
New Zealand
Russia
Germany
United States

Wonderful! :)

Concerning my Needs List: (generously donated by followers and supporters - Thank you very much!!)
* Custom made carrier racks
* Leatherman multi-tool
* Camelbak

Training has come to a halt as I'm fighting off a mild case of food poisoning and there are a lot of changes happening in and around me. (Not because of the food poisoning) :D

But - all is well and I am as happy go lucky as ever. ;)

There are still a lot to be ticked off on my ever growing to-do list. But I am getting there. I have achieved a helluva lot in the last month, though as happy as I am with that, I keep reminding myself that NOW is NO time to lay slack!! Now is the time to push harder than ever!

I have a couple of meetings this week with different people on discussing possibilities concerning potential media partners. So will keep you all appraised.

One day at a time...one proverbial foot in front of the other!

Facebook Group
Needs List

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Countdown Excitement

With two different countdowns currently happening in my life, excitement topped with anticipation and drizzled with a touch of trepidation fills me. (Guess who's been watching cooking shows) :D

Stuck On The Bike is coming along nicely. Hard work and perseverance has payed off nicely...though now the trick is to not lay slack.
There are currently just over 80 people either 'attending' or 'maybe attending' the event on my Facebook group. Now I just need to multiply that by a hundred!!

The beauty of this event is that you do not have to physically 'attend' this event to attend. If that makes any sense in its obscurity. :D
It is quite simply as follows:
You can 'attend' by quite simply donating R100. For your R100 you will then receive Verity Price's next CD - "From Africa With Love" as well as a bonus 'commemorative' CD at the end of my trip around Africa.
You can visit this page to do so -----> Online Page (Remember to include 'Jolandie Rust' in the 'Company' field on the online ordering form)

Those who do not live in South Africa will receive an exclusive download of the album.

So with only 4 months to go till I launch for my mammoth journey around Africa and only 40 DAYS till 'Stuck on The Bike'...I find myself in a very calm space, strangely enough.

Maybe it's just because it's Sunday and Sundays are my 'lazy' days.
Tomorrow might prove to be very different. :)



Facebook Group
Needs List

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Success!!!

Yeah!
After struggling for what felt the longest time, I have secured a venue for Stuck On The Bike!

I am VERY happy to report that Tyger Valley Shopping Center has agreed to host this event!

Finally!!! A breakthrough. Just goes to show - perseverance equals success. You just have to keep at it and not give up. You will reach your goals!! :)

Verity and the Shades might also be performing at the event. They are currently touring in Thailand! So we will confirm when they get back. So make sure you buy their future CD - From Africa With Love to ensure you are a part of this amazing initiative. Not only will you be receiving 2 CD's, but you will also be helping three different causes for a mere R100!

The dates for the event:
5 November 2010 @ 17h00 to 7 November 2010 @ 17h00

If you are on facebook and would like to show your support - rsvp on:
Stuck on the bike event on facebook

Okay so now....I have a lot to organize before then. Best I get cracking.
And it might be a good idea for me to start spending more time on a spinning bike at the gym!! :D

Thank you, to every single soul who has helped and supported me up until now! From the bottom of my heart - you will never know just how much it means to me!

Ohhh...and there's just one tiny little thing I need to still sort out. I need to organize special clearance for my 'little' mascot to keep me company.
Hvir aka 'Die Haas'. --->




Facebook Group
Needs List

Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Progress!!

Woke up this morning with this strange feeling in the pit of my stomach. A feeling of contentment.

Wasn't sure as to why (not that I would rather wake up with a feeling of panic or rage or something...was just odd), until I switched on my laptop and started reading my emails.

THE mail that I have been waiting for, for the last....two weeks maybe. Something that I have really been struggling with. And there it was --->
A potential venue for 'Stuck On The Bike'!

I cannot explain to anyone just how happy I was. I mean it's not like these people gave me a definite yes. But it was just the fact that SOMEONE actually got back to me....SOMEONE out there is willing to help! For a moment there I thought all the 'potential venue sponsors' had died and gone to the mall in the sky! :p

So I have a telephone conference with these people in Cape Town tomorrow afternoon. I am projecting positive energy and manifesting all kinds of wonderful stuff. Well, I am 'projecting' what I wish to manifest. The manifestations just need to get a move on and manifest already!! LoL :D

A friend of mine used to call me 'The Magical Manifestor'. I should try regain that title.

Once the venue is secured...the rest is easy. The rest I've been through and have organised a million times before. Media, support, gear etc etc etc. With a great deal of help from my magical friends of course!

Lets see what else I can manifest this week. ;)


Facebook Group
Needs List

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Dawn of a new week

Right, new week ahead with its own challenges awaiting.

Looking forward to it.
This week I HAVE to sort a couple of things.

1. Most importantly...secure venue for Stuck On The Bike. This has proven to be challenging.

2. Really get into training. Not really worried about fitness...but am worried about being saddle fit for Stuck On The Bike.

3. Media partners. There are quite a few possibilities, so will get cracking tomorrow.

4. Also need to organise a stationary bike for Stuck on The Bike. Though that'll be easy.

So, new week, renewed enthusiasm.

Here we go.... :)

Facebook Group

Needs List

Saturday, 18 September 2010

Time Flies!

Five months.

Five months until I embark on what is sure to be the journey of a lifetime!
Just that thought sends this burst of energy right through me. 144 days to go!
Wow. At times it does feel a bit unreal. But the closer I get to that date: 11-02-2011, the more excited I get. :)

For those who do not know or haven't noticed yet, there is a reason I chose that specific date. One, it's in the same month as my birthday. 3 days after my birthday to be exact. :)
And two, you'll notice it's an ambigram. I have a thing for puzzles, games, riddles, quizzes and things that incline one having to use one's brain. :)

I have these images in my mind about what D-day will be like. I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt I'll at least have a few friends there. I rode from Cape Town to Springbok last year, so know what to expect in terms of typography. I have a good idea of what to expect weather wise (HOT HOT HOT). The heat I can handle, I know that much. The highest temperature I've ever cycled in - 47 degrees Celsius.

From Springbok onwards, I have no idea of what to expect. In terms of surroundings and weather, yes, I have an idea of what to expect there. But in terms of experience, well...we'll just have to wait and see. :) The unknown excites me rather than scare me.

In my mind, once I cross that border...there is NO way I am turning back.
Up until that border, it is still familiar territory and I am still 'home'.

Beyond that border, it's just me, my bike, and Mother Africa - the birthplace of humankind!


Facebook Group
Needs List

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Regroup

Today was 'regrouping' day.

Setting and getting clear on goals. Especially concerning 'Stuck On The Bike', my fundraising event in October.

It is clear that my biggest 'issue' around this event is securing a VENUE!!
I have decided that the event should take place in Cape Town. Yes I am from Jozi, but seeing as I will be launching and ending my journey around Africa in Cape Town, I think it links in well having the fundraising event there.

Yesterday I might have felt a tad demoralized, but only in a minute capacity.
I think most of the people that really know me, know that there is just NO way that I am EVER giving up on this. Plus, in my opinion, I have put way too much time and energy into this. So giving up would be a great waste.

After yesterday's post I have received a few mails and messages of support and motivation. The gist of these messages being that of support from my ever loyal friends and their belief in me. A big thank you to those who sent me these messages!

And a BIG thank you to my friends who forever have to proofread my proposals and press releases. For all your input and wonderful support and for kicking my ass :) THANK YOU!!!! :)

"Between you and every goal that you wish to achieve, there is a series of obstacles, and the bigger the goal, the bigger the obstacles. Your decision to be, have and do something out of the ordinary entails facing difficulties and challenges that are out of the ordinary as well. Sometimes your greatest asset is simply your ability to stay with it longer than anyone else"
-- Brian Tracy



Facebook Group
Needs List

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Yes Please??

There are some things I just do not understand. I try to. I really do. But just don't get it.

Since I decided (about a month ago) that I was going ahead with the Africa trip, I have been working my butt off to achieve what needs to be achieved in order for me to live my dream.
I am a firm believer in that one has to work at what one wishes to achieve.

Though this week seems to be the week that will test my determination. I have had, and know I will have many more similar challenges.

I have sent out my proposal to NUMEROUS potential sponsors and partners. I have got Proudly SA to endorse my trip. I have pleaded with numerous organizations. I have put my story on so many sites and forums that even I can't keep them straight anymore. I can't even remember when the last time was I got to bed before 2am.

And this week the answers start flogging in. All along the lines of: "Sorry, but no".

Now don't get me wrong. This does not discourage me in any way. On the contrary it just makes the fire within me which is my passion for what I wish to achieve with my life burn even wilder. So to speak. :)
And I have achieved small triumphs along the way.

I have now decided...enough is enough, it's time.
It's time to step up my game. It's time to take out my miracle bag.
No more time for idle chatter. It's time for action in a big way.
Something radical is needed...and I have an idea. :)

No more no's accepted here. So you can say anything to me...just don't say no!!

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts" - Winston Churchill


Facebook Group

Needs List

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Calm Before The Storm

Although I am not on the bike as often as I'd like, (I have this uncanny ability to convince myself I have a very good reason for not doing certain things...really don't have a good reason here! Bad Jolandie :D) I have been 'training' for the October event.

Seeing as I know I might have to spend more than 24 hours on a stationary bike, I thought I'd see with how little sleep I can cope. (wasn't planned, just happened)
So I have slept 10 hours in the last 3 days. And am hppay to rpoert taht I am pfercetly fnie! :D :D
As any of my close friends know, I am fond of my sleep. So this promises to be an interesting challenge.

Also when I get tired I tend to get a little 'unhinged'...in a very funny way. I'll start laughing at everything and you may ask me something and I'll just stare at you...then burst out laughing. Yep...this is going to be interesting. LoL

I plan on unleashing the fury of the adventurer on my unsuspecting future supporters and sponsors this coming week. No holding back. Just do what I have to do and not postpone on ANYTHING!

Venue for 20 Oct event is now between Johannesburg or Cape Town.
Joburg - well this is my hometown. Wanted to say all my friends are here but realized in the meantime that's not true. My friends are scattered ALL over. Though my nearest and dearest friends are here...most of them.
Cape Town - The mother city. I actually do have a whole bunch of friends in Cpt...come to think of it. And this is where my journey will start and end.

Mmmmm....decisions decisions.
Will know this week.

Very excited and really looking forward to kicking butt this week.

:)


Facebook Group

Needs List

Friday, 10 September 2010

Frustration

I think I have mentioned where my patience fail me. I have a great amount of patience, except.... when it comes to the trip. LoL

You can ask me to queue for you, go do your shopping for you, untie a crazy knot for you....I won't mind. But when it comes to the trip and organizing everything needed, my patience seem to disappear into the great void.

I am pressed for time to organize the fundraising event taking place on the 20-10-2010. I still have to secure a venue, get press release out, organize details with charities etc etc etc. Absolutely crazy. And thing is, people tend to just not get back to you. This holds up everything. Grrrrrrrrrrrr

Okay: step one - secure venue.
I will do this first thing next week. I'll just have to go see these people, because they don't follow up on queries.

After the venue is secured, things should go more smoothly.

Okay...off to work for the night.


Facebook Group
Needs List

Thursday, 09 September 2010

154 Days To Go

I actually had a bit of a fright when I logged onto my blog today and realized I only have 154 days before I launch from Cape Town.

Somehow, in some way, I have come to convince myself that I still have loads of time left. Ummmm....or not.
Now I know 154 days might sound like ample time, but in reality 5 months is not a helluva lot of time to get things organised for a project of this size.

I mean, I still have so much to do!
It is more a 'somber panic' than an outright flat spin! :)
More of a little nudge from myself to myself.

I know I just have to keep focussed, keep at it everyday, keep doing what I have to do and on D-day I will be ready.

I promised myself I'd be back in the gym for at least an hour every morning this week, but have to confess that this has not materialized yet. I have to get used to my new daily routine as I am now working on the trip during the day and working at a restaurant from 3pm in the afternoons till 11/12pm at night.

Feeling a bit sapped of energy. But will get used to it soon, I'm sure. I have worked ridiculous hours for most of my life, so just have to get into it again. :)

Need to really just keep pushing now.


Facebook Group

Needs List

Wednesday, 08 September 2010

Proudly South African




I am very happy to announce that the Proudly South African campaign now officially endorses this project!!!! Wooohooooo!!! :)

Progress....progress.... "Just keep swimming, just keep swimming"

Every day I take a step closer to reaching my goals and fulfilling my dream.

A big thank you to Proudly South African for your support and endorsement!

Absolutely wonderful!!!


Facebook Group

Needs List

Monday, 06 September 2010

Effort Equals Results

Facebook Group
Needs List

I posted a saying to my Facebook today that goes: "If you wish to reach success, you need to not only BELIEVE in yourself and your capabilities...but quite simply KNOW it!"

I have come to really believe (Sorry...KNOW) :p this over the past couple of months.
I have always subscribed to the notion of 'Creative Visualization'. I try and avoid negative thinking, I do what I like to call - 'magical manifesting meditation' every night before I go to sleep. But have learned that apart from thinking and believing and visualizing, one needs to also 'act'.

No use in thinking: "I believe I'm going to win the lotto, I believe I'm going to win the lotto.." and then you don't buy a ticket.

I know I am capable of completing this trip around Africa. I know it won't always be easy and there will be times when I might break down in tears, throw my bike to the ground, maybe even curse in my video diary...but more than anything...I KNOW I can do this. I have been acting on this 'knowing' with great fervor.

Results are starting to show, though as patient an individual as I am...I do not have patience when it comes to this trip. I try my very best to be patient for replies and responses...
I just want things to happen and get sorted NOW. :D

Like for instance: I have made contact with people in 7 of the countries I will be travelling through...which is a wonderful result in a week's time. But it's like I have this unreasonable expectation that when I send requests to 1000 people in one day...they will all reply the same day! Yeh right. This is Africa after all with it's own idea of how time works.

I am now registered, and have created completed profiles on almost a dozen online travel sites. It's getting hard to keep track of all the sites I am on. LoL
Now all I need to do is be active on all this sites (not like it takes time) and rack up a whole lot of contacts in all the countries I will be travelling through. So that's ONE of the things on my growing to-do list. Oi vey!!! :D

I am also starting a new job from tomorrow where I will be working from 3pm in the afternoons to around 11pm at night.

I aim at getting back in the gym from tomorrow...train at least an hour a day. I have never trained for any of my trips, but have decided I would actually like to not have to suffer through the first couple of weeks so much this time round.

And then I still need to organise: Outdoor gear, cycling gear, medical stuff, communications equipment, visas, new passport, 2 fundraisers, launch event....zzzzzzzzzzzzzz

As they say: "Sleep is for sissies". (And once again we would all like to know who 'THEY' are????)

Sunday, 05 September 2010

All About The Gear

Okay so I have now decided on what gear I want. Acquiring it all is another story...LoL

But I'll get there.

The Bike:



Specialized Tricross (Either Sport or Comp)

The Panniers

Rear: Arkel GT 54



Front: Arkel GT 18



Handlebar: Arkel Big Boy Bag



The Pannier Racks: Old Man Mountain

Rear:



Front:



Tyres and Tubes:

Continenental Touring Plus



Tubes: Doesn't really matter as long as it's a decent Shrader valved tube



Some kit and components:

Shimano Deore 10 speed:



Shimano Pedals:



Shoes I currently have:



Helmet:



OUTDOOR:

















Facebook Group

Needs List

Saturday, 04 September 2010

1 000 Members!!!

Facebook Group has reached 1 000 members!!! Woohooo!

Thank you to everybody for the wonderful support!

Thank you, Merci, Obrigada, Ngiyabonga, Kealiboga, Dankie, Danke, Toda, Graci, Spasibo, Shukran, Arigato, Xie Xie, Asante

:D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D :D

Facebook Group

Friday, 03 September 2010

I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends

"What would you do if I sang out of tune,
Would you stand up and walk out on me?
Lend me your ears and I'll sing you a song
And I'll try not to sing out of key.

Oh, I get by with a little help from my friends
Mm, I get high with a little help from my friends
Mm, gonna try with a little help from my friends..." Joe Cocker - A little help from my friends.(Originally by the Beatles)


One of my favourite songs...and one that fills me with the greatest feeling of gratitude and love imaginable.

Whenever I might feel a little blue or like I can't carry on...I just sing this song and it picks me right back up.

I am truly, truly blessed to have such unbelievably, terrifically wonderful friends and caring, giving souls in my life.

Every now and then I do, in all honesty, feel a bit overwhelmed and maybe like I'm aiming to achieve the impossible. The feeling will sometimes creep, slowly, right into my core...but before it can take hold of me, I remember...

I remember how others believe in me
I remember how others support me
I remember how much I am loved

And my fire roars again.

Thank You!!!

Facebook Group

Needs List

Thursday, 02 September 2010

161 Days To Go!

The days are ticking by, the to do list is just mutating into something out of a nightmare (hehe...not quite that bad but overwhelming at times) and I find my brain just going into 'hibernation' mode.

There's so much to do, so many people to contact, so much to keep abreast of...EISH! (For my non South-African audience: Eish means: An expression of surprise, wonder or frustration here in Mzansi)okay okay (Mzansi = A popular word for South Africa)

A little lesson on South African lingo. ;)

On the upside: My Facebook group has now grown to almost 1000 members!!! Yes, minute in the greater scale of things...but it excites me okay! LoL :)

I have also joined and written on all the pages of the countries I will be travelling through on facebook and have been getting some feedback.

I now have contacts for Namibia, DRC, Gabon, Morocco and Tanzania.

I also might have two fundraising events coming up in October...you'll know when I know.

Oh...and I finally told my dad today that I'm leaving on the 11-02-2011 to cycle around Africa. I will refrain from posting his reply here!!! :d

Needs List
Facebook Group

Wednesday, 01 September 2010

Spring Is Here!


I must admit, I am more of a spring and summer person than autumn and winter.

I can handle heat, this I know from cycling through Israel.

I remember at one point we stopped for a break just short of the Dead Sea. We had very little money with us...but thought it well spent on ice-cream and copious amounts of Coca-cola!! LoL I was so exhausted and decided to take a nap in the shade underneath a palm tree next to a camel...when I woke up (pretty sure the camel woke me) I was soaked in perspiration and on my phone's thermometer it read 47 degrees Celsius!!! (115 deg Fahrenheit)

So heat I can handle. Cold - I'd rather not.

It would seem I am pretty intent on letting the WHOLE of Africa know who I am and what I am doing/planning on doing. I went on just about every facebook page of every country I plan on travelling through. Joined each page and messaged the members. (Or rather wrote on the wall). Hey...every bit helps!

And if I have to tell a BILLION people about who I am and what my dream is in order to make that dream a reality...then I will do it!

I should be back in the gym, 5 days a week this week.
Have been to the gym for the last two days.

Having been sick, on and off, for almost 3 months sort of kept me away from the gym.

Plus I have to get saddle fit again!!! Ouch. Hehehehe.

Facebook Group

Needs list

Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Organizing, Organizing, Organizing...

Okay, so today I've been following up on contacts made yesterday. Replying to messages sent to me on facebook and mail etc, fellow adventurers coming from all over the world. Crazy! But wonderful. :-)

Thank goodness for Google translate! People must think I am a very talented linguist as I've received messages in French (of which I know a LITTLE bit) and dutch ex. Mirjam Wouters, a fellow adventure and cycling enthusiast. (which I can mostly understand, seeing as my mother tongue is Afrikaans). But still!

I can say, however, that I am updating my French. With the wonderful help of a very good friend of mine (who I am sure I drive insane sometimes) :-) ...and watching Euro news in French. And audio CD's.

Today I sent a query to Trappers Trading, on potential sponsorship for outdoor gear. Also to Netcare for medical requirements and Shoprite for food requirements. So we'll see.

Aaaaaanndddd...SO very excited about the upcoming fund raising event. Can't wait to make it public. Just have to secure a venue. Mmmmmmm....

Okay, now I've used up my productivity quota for today...will continue tomorrow.

Thank you everybody for all the wonderful support!!

Monday, 30 August 2010

164 Days To Go!!!

Okidoki!

So today I've been doing quite a bit of ground work.
I am seeing people from ProudlySA next week, to discuss them endorsing my trip and helping with raising awareness.

I have contacted numerous potential sponsors.
1. Mobile Solar Charger
2. Medical (First aid kit, inoculations etc)
3. Tracker
4. Outdoor gear
5. Cycling gear

I will be having a fund raising event on 20 Oct 2010. In Melville, Johannesburg. Details will be publicized soon.

I have some accommodation sorted for when I get to Morocco.
Kinda struggling on this front. People seem to be reluctant in giving me an intro to friends they might have in Africa. Unless nobody knows a soul anywhere in Africa. (Unlikely??)

Also organizing a massive group ride when I launch from Cape Town via The Hub SA
Hopefully we'll have great numbers there on the day.

And press releases due to go out in the next couple of days.

All in all...a productive day. (Besides the fact that my laptop is seriously testing one of my virtues...namely 'patience'.) It just switches off abruptly every couple of minutes! Grrrrrrrrrr

164 days sounds like a long time....but it certainly isn't. I'm getting there. :-)

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Friends from all over the world!

First thing this morning when I woke up, I received a message from a facebook friend of mine who lives in Belgium. Offering a place for me to stay when I reach Morocco.

I really will never be able to adequately express just how grateful I am to people for all their help! Even the smallest gesture makes tears of absolute gratitude well up in my eyes!

Merci beaucoup Velo Nomade!!!!

Ps: Should anybody who might be following my blog have any contacts throughout Africa, please contact me. This is for accommodation purposes and just so I at least have A contact in each country.

Thank you in advance!

Saturday, 28 August 2010

Day Off!

The term 'weekend', in general, does not carry great meaning for me.

Though on this particular Saturday I have decided to just 'chill' a bit.

Lie on the couch and watch television all day! I don't take a lot of time off from organizing the trip. Though I realized to today, come to think of it... I actually never take time off from organizing the trip. Even when I just lie on the couch watching television, I will find something that relates to the trip or that inspires me in some or other way concerning the trip. Or something I make a mental note of to research later.

Though watching the Springboks take on the Wallabies today (for a change it seems like we might actually win this one, 15 minutes to go right now) I can't really see how anything about this game might relate to my trip. Apart from the fact that I did make a mental note to keep up with dates and goings on so I can plan accordingly in getting to a place (wherever I may find myself) to support our boys! ;-)

Friday, 27 August 2010

Current Needs List

There are a whole bunch of items on the list that people have messaged me about, in trying to obtain the items: but here's the complete list:

OUTDOOR GEAR:
Tent
Sleeping mat
Gas stove
Basic cooking utensils
Basic eating utensils
Compass
Leatherman multi-tool
Jacket
Boots
Headlight (Petzl)
Waterproof Matches
Survival knife
Camping lamp
Water purification tablets

CLOTHING:
3 x Shorts (Hiking shorts)
4 x T-shirts (Lightweight hiking T-shirts)
2 x Long T’s (Same as short T’s)
4 x Socks
1 x Raincoat (Cycling)
1 x Sandals (Hiking type sandals)
1 x Long Pants (Outdoor hiking)
2 x Caps

CYCLING:
Bike (Hybrid)
15 x Chains
Tyres x 120
Tubes x 90
Spokes
Brake Pads
Repair Kits
Gloves x 2 (1 short, 1 full)
Cycling shoes x 2
Helmet
Sunglasses
Front Pannier Bags
Tyre Inners
Lube
Front light
Back light
Camelbak
Day pack (Backpack)



MEDICAL:
Vaccinations
Malaria tablets
Medical cover
Comprehensive First Aid kit:

Waterproof sticking plasters (single and rolls)
One inch and two inch bandages
Gauze squares
Alcohol swabs
Steri-strip
Aspirin & paracetemol
Pre-packed wound dressing
Re-hydrating powder
Elastic tube gauze
Ophthalmic lotion
Antiseptic
Persivate lotion
Betadine gel
CPR mouth valve
Gloves
Tweezers
Disinfectant
Scissors
Alcohol swabs
A suture kit
Pre-packed wound dressing
Drip needles
Elastic tube gauze
Needles
Antiseptic
Syringes
Betadine gel
Diclofenac
Gloves
Co-trixomazole
Disinfectant
Metoclopramide
Metronidazole
Glucose lozenges
Hyoscine Butyl bromide
Vit B injections
Chlorpheniramine
Voltaren tablets
Penicillin
Voltaren gel
Anti biotics
Arnica oil
Malaria test kits
Arnica pills
Malaria treatment courses
Space blanket


COMMUNICATION:
Smartphone
Airtime monthly – estimated at R1,000 per month
Camera (Video & Still) + cable for downloading footage to phone to upload to internet

OTHER:
Solar Charger for phone/camera etc
Tazer
Tracker x2 (1 for bike, 1 on my person)
Travel insurance

FOOD:
Estimated at R70 per day

FUNDING:Visas and relevant travel documents estimated at R50,000

170 days to launch!

I am just unbelievably amazed at all the messages of support I have been receiving!!

People messaging me on Facebook, on Twitter, emailing me, phoning me...just because they want to help in any way they can!

I always have this intense urge to be able to repay all the kindness I have received. Although I know that, personally I will never be satisfied in repaying all the people who are supporting and helping me no matter how hard I try. So I have now told myself that the best way to thank everybody out there is for me to just do this thing.

To go out, live my dream...and not hold back. Because when I arrive back in Cape Town with a SERIOUS tan and maybe half the woman I used to be, that will be enough. Having achieved something amazing, and giving hope to others in doing the same!

Verity Price, a well known South African musician, offered to donate R25 to me for every one of her CD's sold today on Facebook. Verity is well known for being the first musician in South Africa to sell her CD's before the CD's existed! Verity ; My Group On Facebook

I also posted my plans onto TheHubSA and have been receiving great support from my fellow cyclists in South Africa. We might be planning a mass cycling send off, when I start in Cape Town!

I have also been receiving numerous messages around people busy with, or having done similar adventures!! I have been in contact with some of these people and it just excites me to no end to hear their stories!

Makes me want to jump on my bike right away!!!

So to every single caring giving soul out there who has contributed in any way, Thank You!!! From the very bottom of my heart!! Thank you soooo much!