A Review of the Jet Mcdonald Talk 'Mind is the Ride' by Simon Nurse
Last Thursday, Future Inns were proud to co-sponsor an evening of cycle discussion with long distance cyclist, writer and performer Jet McDonald. Accompanying Jet was Drew Mabey, spokesperson for Cardiff Cycle City, Nia Thomas co-founder of beyondabook.org and South American cycle explorer and Commonwealth Games cyclist and local bike shop owner, Ian Jeremiah of Cyclopaedia.
The primary speaker was Jet, a cyclist, writer and performer who spent a year cycling from Bristol to India. The journey for Jet was as much metaphysical as it was physical and Jet gave us an insight into how his thinking has changed as a consequence of those long hours in the saddle. Jet uses his bike as both a prop and a road map; tracing his journey along the lines provided by his Thorn touring bike. The thing that struck me most about the talk was the kindness of strangers. We all at one time or another, fear vast tracts of the planet, yet time and time again, people are proved to be kind, welcoming and caring no matter irrespective of geo-politics or poverty. Jet’s book about the journey – “Mind is the ride” – will be published shortly by Unbound books.
Jet’s talk prepared the ground for a fascinating, informal Q&A, where Jet was joined by long distance cyclist Nia Thomas – her first cycle tour took her from the high Altiplano of Bolivia, through the Andes and on to North America – and Ian Jeremiah, who was invited to discuss bike fitting and the impact of riding position on cycling comfort. This session matched Jet’s talk in length and could easily have gone on much longer; the questions were interesting (‘What kit could you not do without?’, ‘What proportion of time was spent under canvas?’, ‘2 months, anywhere in the world, where would you go?’) and came thick and fast. If after attending the evening you didn’t want to strap some panniers to your favourite bike and head off into the wild, then you really needed to check your pulse.
Keep your eyes peeled for other events organised by the Cardiff cycling community and supported by Future Inns. They are illuminating, inspirational and enjoyable and in the case of this one; enjoyably free to attend.