We're Lauren and Jay, two Americans off to bike around the world.
Lauren remembers a time (just several years ago) when she was reluctant to give cycling a chance. "But I like taking the bus!", Lauren, a public transportation enthusiast, would say to Jay's amusement. Aside from the occasional family bike ride around the Rose Bowl during her childhood, Lauren had not spent much time on a bicycle before 2013.
Lauren's adult cycling journey began with a bikeshare day-pass that soon became a bikeshare annual membership and eventually the purchase of her very own bicycle from Craiglist (and later a local bike shop). As her confidence and comfort level and skills on the bicycle (and Washington, DC streets) grew, so did her cycling frequency and distances. She began biking to and from work (with the help of bicycle-friendly dresses and rain gear). She traversed parts of the city once unknown. She fell in love with the efficiency, accessibility, wellness, open air, vulnerability, community, and joy of bicycle riding. Although she definitely still appreciates good public transportation, cycling has made its way into Lauren's heart (and legs!) and enriched her life immensely.
Jay never really got to travel much as a kid. So at the age of twenty-three he took off on his trusty scooter and roamed 15,000 miles around North America, getting his first taste of freedom, two-wheeled adventure, and simple travel along the way. After summers on the trains of Europe, winters on the buses of India and Nepal, and long holidays driving around the deserts of Namibia and South Africa, Jay decided to bring his bicycle along on his next big trip, a ride through the mountains of valleys of southern Morocco, and immediately fell in love with the pace and routine of simply cycling.
A few bike tours later, and he's decided to leave behind a nice, comfortable government job and a self-built, self-sustaining tiny house in Washington, DC to cycle around the world, which is more likely than not to entail loads of bumpy roads, strong headwinds, and tough challenges—but also the freedom and the privilege to see some amazing places, meet some wonderful people, and spend lots and lots of time with a really lovely girl.