Collect your bike in Aberfoyle and head north on the A821. It's a little rough on the way there. Lots of hills but you'll soon forgive Scotland, because it's unbelievably beautiful. 15 breathtaking miles and two national forests later you'll find yourself at Loch Katrine where you can take a well earned break. I wish I was there now. Heart popping. Oh, and on the way back make sure you stop at The Wee Blether tea room. Super nice cafe with an Americana vibe. Ace.
Lochside, Kinlochard, FK8 3TL
Google map: bit.ly/H4m8Px
In Summer 2008 I joined a conservation project in the Peruvian Amazon. I was based in the Manu Biosphere Reserve, said to be one of the most bio-diverse places on the planet. It was.
Strangely, for me, the jungle itself wasn’t the best bit. I loved the people who lived there. While I helped them to reforest instead of deforest, they taught me how big life can be even with very little.
On my last day I scaled a waterfall, avoiding bullet ants, poisonous spiders and deadly snakes, to visit a natural oil spring. Daniel, our jungle guide, told me that in 50 years time an oil company would be drilling where I stood, exploiting both the oil and the people who live there. Afterward I travelled up the Madre De Dios river to the Shintuya community. There I saw a hand painted Makaw on the side of a Peki-Peki boat. It was one of the most beautiful things I’d ever seen.
In that moment I realised there are all kinds of marks we can make on the world and I knew there and then I wanted to leave a brightly coloured one.
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