Home > politics > Orkney trip. day 1. Aberdeen, train and ferry

Orkney trip. day 1. Aberdeen, train and ferry

Heading off to Orkney for 10 days for solo cycling trip. Mostly hope to be wild camping.


Omg what is it with East coast cities and being 3 dimensional and Google maps cycle routing overestimating my ability to carry laden bike up flights of stone stairs…

Left behind a sunny Glasgow and now in grey and rainy Aberdeen. Cobbled streets filled with posh cars, though at least that means the owners care enough about the paint work to give me a wide berth. Friends with local knowledge recommended me The Coffee House in a cute oldy part of the city. No idea how I got here but it involved lots of detours to avoid stairs and nipping through a v fancy shopping precinct with a very wet bike! And then lugging panniers and tent from the closest cycle parking which was on a different street. But the soup and sandwich is tasty if not cheap, and the cakes look great and they have a whole menu for hot chocolate!

Ferry in just under 4 hours. Apprehensive about camping now that it’s so wet. V glad I’m in a hostel in Kirkwall for next 2 nights. Excited to see museums and the cathedral tomorrow. And that it’s a 6 hour ferry! Never been on one so long and it was cheaper than going via Thurso in this direction.

Last minute packing as ever. For someone who loves travel as much as I do, I sure hate the repetitive, boring, endless packing required. I need to learn to find some satisfaction and ritual in it. It’s almost too easy and automatic now, yet still annoying and fiddly.
Last night was particularly intense as in the middle of my trip prep I went to a vigil for those killed in the homophobic attack in Orlando. Was overwhelming with all the emotions, coming on top of a week of the Tel Aviv shooting and a long conversation with someone from Olympia about Rachel. And been working a lot. And been worried about and inadequately able to support close to my heart but long-distance people in my life as they go through tough times.


But now I’m back on the road. Even just cycling to the train station and now in Aberdeen it felt so good to be back on my bike, self sufficient with camping gear on the back. Self contained. Free. On my next adventure :)

Categories: politics
  1. Glynis
    June 16, 2016 at 12:53 pm

    Have a fantastic time. In case you need to stay inside over night, I have transferred something into your account, with love VPM

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