I’ve covered more distance this past month than ever before in my life. Sadly hardly any of it was by bicycle.
But, great and amazing things once again have happened. And I am going to tell you all about it right now.in the paper!

As you might know, I’ve gone back to Holland. Just for one month. It wasn’t planned, it just sort of happened due to visa-trouble, bad weather conditions, family matters and a reasonably priced flight. I booked the 7th and touched down less than a week later.

It was a strange journey back… At first a 22 hour bus ride (great way to have confirmed that cycling is the best way of travel) with lovely views of the full moon over a monsoonal landscape.
Followed by a 15 hour flight… So weird to see below you the countries you’ve spend so much time cycling across, …
I had my nose glued against the window as we flew over Malaysia, India, Turkmenistan…
I know exactly what it looks like down there and now I’m hanging 10km above in the air. Unreal. And a little bit sad.

40 hours of no-sleep and I stood at Schiphol airport. My head buzzing and feeling strange I waited for my parents to arrive, they would pick me up but the plane arrived 45min early and I had no luggage so I came out them doors all excited but no one there… Great. I will go away for two years again :-s

But they did come. And I met my new Niece Stella! a chat over coffee with StellaOf course I’ve seen her on photos and webcam. But you can’t really compare that to holding this 4month old girl who smiles and makes funny little noises. She’s absolutely gorgeous. Weird to think she’ll probably be walking and talking by the time I see her again.Mum and Stella

I spend my time in Holland running around like a mad woman visiting friends and family, sorting through my 13.000 pics of the past two years and talking with newspapers… I’m telling you, one day I’m gonna be a proper famous person 😉indeed

With my grandparents I traveled to The Hague to see where they grew up and pay a visit to the Indonesian embassy. Who didn’t want to give me a visa unless I had prove I’d leave the country…
I didn’t since I had no idea from where and when I wanted to head for Australia. I did have my Australian visa and a letter with what I’m doing. Not good enough, even though I rang them twice to ask and send them an email upfront.
So we ran around looking for internet, booked a random flight (to Malaysia) and then it was fine. Weird. Since it’s obvious I have no intention of going to Malaysia…

I also managed to squeeze in a few days of Ireland.
I flew to Derry where I worked for years. Steve & Kylie had a great surprise for me as they took me to Cirque du Soleil in Belfast. A surreal performance of some extremely bendy people.
Kylie made one of her great NZ roast lambs and of course I had a few pints of Guinness and danced around in Peadar O Donnells, just like in the olden days 😉 Nothing much changes in Derry. I Love it!

One weekend there happened to be the ‘fiets- en wandelbeurs’, a big convention/market-thingy, where a whole lot of hiking and cycling fanatics go to check out the latest gear and destinations.
Some people I still wanted to see were going to be there so I volunteered to be at the stand of the wereldfietser , to talk to people who are planning to go on bicycle holidays. (and to get in for free… )

While I stood there this gentleman came up to me asking if I get sponsored on my travels. This, sadly, isn’t the case and I told him so. Next thing I know I stand there with his business card and the instruction to ring him later.
A bit perplexed I told some other people. On the card it said he’s the director of ‘Multicycle’. A Dutch brand bicycle that is very VERY good, and not within my budget. (you see, I got my own bike 2nd hand from marktplaats.nl)

So when I rang him next Monday he told me they were planning to let me use a bicycle. I couldn’t believe it! I’ve been pretty much bouncing around the house screaming; ”WHOAAAARGGGHH!!!! “ ever since.All measured and perfect

With my sister I visited the factory to pick up the bike and we got shown around. I even met the guy who actually build my bike. His name is Thijs. (Hi Thijs!)
There are all these special things… She is made of scandium. Apparently stronger and lighter than Aluminum. She also has 42 spokes, which makes the wheel stronger (I paid attention). And no derailler! Instead the gear change-stuff is inside the rear-hub, it’s called a Rohloffs hub. That means no trouble with my gears anymore! Men, it’s a fancy mega supersonic gorgeous bicycle. Check her out at http://www.multicycle.nl/ she’s the extreme.

I’m not at all worried to cycle across outback Australia now, what could possibly go wrong with a bicycle like this!

Even now, I’m looking right at her. She’s in my room. She’s the most beautiful bike I’ve ever seen….
I feel a bit sorry for my old bike. Who is still sitting on Bali, unaware that after over 30.000km together we’re going to part ways.
She will still be of good use, in three weeks time my cousin is coming over and we’ll be cycling around Bali and Lombok together.

All in all, it has been a very good trip. I did manage to catch up with most of the people I wanted too, and last thursday I made my way back to Schiphol airport.and there we go...

It’s a bit of a hassle and very nerve wrecking to fly with this bicycle. Lucky she seemed to have survived.
I arrived in Jakarta with no plan and no idea where to head first.
So I rang my friend in Malang who told me if I hurry I could still make the last flight to Surabaya and he could pick me up. So I hurried.
And I’m now back in Malang. From where I pick up on my way east again soon.
And jet lag? Nah, hardly, just been sleeping ‘till 3a.m. the past two days but all is good 😀

More tales from the road will shortly follow.

16 thoughts on “‘Multicyclingdutchgirl’

  1. Hoi Mirjam, hopelijk vindt je het niet erg dat ik je in het Nedelands schrijf.
    Ik ben je achternicht, dochter van je oma’s broer Henk en Riet Souer.
    Ik hoorde van je geweldige reis via mijn moeder en wilde je laten weten dat ik het echt een waanzinnige manier vind om de wereld te verkennen.
    Ik heb me ingeschreven voor de nieuwsbrief dus blijf ik op de hoogte van deze geweldige ervaring.
    Ik heb al wat foto’s gekeken en wat brichten gelezen, ik kan je niet vertellen hoe trots ik erop ben dat een vrouw en dan ook nog wel (verre) familie zo’n reis onderneemt.
    Heel veel succes verder, groetjes Cynthia.

  2. Meis, wat heerlijk voor je! Een sponsor, heb even gekeken, ziet er mooi uit (welke heb je? De electra?)
    Heeft toch zo moeten zijn dat je op dat moment in NL zat…. Everything happens for a reason!

    Fiets-se maar weer, kijk uit naar je volgende blog!

    Knufkus, Debby xxx

  3. And how did your old bike react on the fact you dumped her for your new bike? I hope your new bike doens’t experience nasty things like sudden flat tires, swapped gear cables and such things out of jealousy. Nice bike and a great thing to hear about the gift. Turns out again that some people get such great things because other people think they earn it.

    Anyway I hope you had a great time at home and off course looking forward to the remainder of your adventures.

  4. Brilliant! Glad to hear you had a great time in Holland and saw your lovely parents. And your niece is super cute! Very pleased you got a shiny new bike too, you deserve it. Just sad you did not manage to fit London into your hectic schedule. Take care, love Sally x

  5. Hoi Mir,

    Fijn dat je weer netjes terug bent in Malang. Was gezellig om je een maandje in de buurt te hebben. Veel plezier weer en pas goed op jezelf!
    -xxx- Karin en Stella

  6. uuuuuh, how cool!!! Congratulations to the sponsor to having found YOU, he couldn´t have done any better 😉 Enjoy your travels, if you pass through Townsville in North Queensland don´t forget to say hello to Steve! He´ll love it!
    Besos de Buenos Aires…
    Herdis 🙂

  7. Yes, finally… you got a sponsor! I was waiting for this news for over 2 years… 😀

    Hope you’ll enjoy your new bike and that she’ll take good care of you! 😉

    BTW: Stella is absolutely amazingly cute! No wonder her name is Stella (Stella means star but I’m sure you knew that already)

  8. Sjeezus mir, jij was in Nederland geweest? Is het mogelijk dat ik jou aan de overkant heb zien rijden van de deventerstraat, richting Deventer op je brommer? Ik dacht eerlijk gezegd dak een beetje gek was geworden en misschien was dat wel zo. Maar echt goed dat MultiCycle je sponsort man! En gefeliciteerd met je nichtje. Keep on truckin’!

  9. Hé zus,
    goed te horen dat je fiets de vliegreis heeft overleefd. Gezellig datje effe een maandje hier was. Toch weer een paar hilarische momenten beleeft:-) .
    Heel veel plezier en succes met je verdere reis, en een dikke knuffel van Dimmen en mij

  10. Happy St Patricks Day!!! I thought of you and the Derry crew and even rang Kylie but I think her number has changed. They played “I wish I was back home in Derry” and I got all homesick for Paeder O’donnells. 🙂
    Glad you back on the road and getting closer to me. I’m flying out to Canada on the 24th May so hope I will see you before!

  11. Hey nicht!

    Fijn dat je weer veilig terug bent. Had je van te voren vast niet gedacht; dat je zo een vruchtbaar verblijf in NL zou hebben 😉 Top hoor! Wees zuinig op je nieuwe vriendinnetje en we vonden het leuk om je nog even in ons nedrig stulpje te mogen ontvangen 🙂 Liefs M&M&M

  12. Ik ben blij voor jou en je nieuwe fiets! Hopelijk tot ziens, waar dan ook in de wereld! Ook groetjes van mn vriendin, die met full-attention heeft geluisterd, toen ik in mijn beste engels je blog voorlas 😉 met een biertje in mijn hand.

  13. you new bike looks so snazzy!
    I can’t believe you are so close to NZ and I’m about to head to Europe again.
    Hopefully you’ll still be down here when I get home (October)
    You’ve inspired me…. I’m visiting the netherlands to see friends and meet family and will be picking up a bike (albeit a cheapie) and setting off on my first ever cycle trip… if I like it I’ll hold on to it for the rest of my journey..

  14. Hallo Mirjam, wat een verhalen en je enorm goede tijd in Holland met als klapper de prachtige fiets die je mag gaan promoten, ik denk dat je het verschil met je andere fiets wel kan merken.Ik hoorde van Oma Wouters dat je nu gezeldschap hebt van je nicht moet die niet eerst ook eelt op haar behind krijgen? Zo ik kijk uit naar de volgende belevenissen van jullie beiden.
    Veel fietsplezier.
    Groetjes van Tante Riet Souer uit Maassluis.

  15. Dag Mirjam, ik lees de verhalen in je archief en deze is wel erg bijzonder, zo wat ik begrijp vanwege tegenslag terug naar NL en dan zo’n verrassing, prachtig!
    Ga snel weer verder lezen.

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