There are many situations in undertaking a long trip on a bike when we have to pause. They may be brief stops while undertaking bike repairs, becoming ill or waiting in relation to VISAs. We were lucky as we toured. Our ride was rarely halted while we were out of the UK. We had just the odd day of sqiffy tums, a day waiting just before a border in Thailand and time waiting on train bookings while in India.

However, our trip overall was built around pauses. Unfortunately my mom’s cancer diagnosis meant John and I came home every five months or so to ensure valuable family time wasn’t lost and neither too was our opportunity for the ride of a lifetime. As it turned out it was a great way to travel. As well as having more valuable time with family and friends, thereby sharing more of our experiences, it also meant we never took our trip for granted.

Right now the pause is bigger than ever. This is not just a pause from riding. It’s a pause from life…of a kind. John and I are both now full time carers for my moma. While this is a tough time it is also one full of richness, patience and love. It’s a pause from life in the sense that dreams and goals I have may be put on hold but in essence a reminder of the very fragility of human existence, the importance of achieving goals when you are able and the absolute value of family and friends.

I’ve learnt a lot while I was riding but boy, I’m learning an awful lot now. Take time to pause. Tell people you love them. Live life to the full but don’t be too busy just doing. Sometimes you just have to be.