Friends of the shop and regulars at our Knit Clubs will know of the amazingly creative and perfectly eccentric Terri Bate, who usually teaches our Spinning Workshops. Having recently retired from her job as a local midwife (including having delivered the babies of several staff and customers!) she has just embarked on an amazing adventure – Spinning Around the World.
Terri’s plan is to cycle solo to her sister who lives on Kangaroo Island, Australia (and possibly back again – she has 18 months to complete the journey in!), exploring textiles along the way.
She says: “I want to live a simple life, getting up and going to bed with the sun, journaling, sketching, being in the moment and appreciating the big, wide world without the rush of trying to meet the many (more often than not) self imposed deadlines. Travelling slowly, meeting people – exploring inner and outer worlds and learning to live with less ‘stuff’.
I have the gear, the bike, the panniers etc – I have had all the vaccinations and I have pored over maps in anticipation. I have even taken a couple of bicycle maintenance classes (not my forte, you understand).
In no way am I setting a precedent – there are many, many, other solo cyclists who have laid the trail – from Dervla Murphy to Al Humphries, from Annie Londonderry to Anne Mustoe and Josie Dew, from Louise Sutherland to Rubina Soorty and Anne Wilson (I could go on) – that’s a deep wheel rut to follow.
I, too, will do this solo (I think I will meet more people if I’m on my own) though, hopefully, friends and family will come visit en route. I plan to use hospitality sites like CouchSurfing, WarmShowers for accommodation, or camp (have tent, sleeping bag, trangia stove etc). I will take my knitting – of course – I knit EVERYWHERE and am a complete geek! Although I’m getting rid of ALL my stash apart from the teeny weeny bit I can carry with me. Deciding what to take will be a tough decision – but I can start hoarding again when I get back.
Many people have asked me if I’m ‘doing it for charity’, and I really hadn’t intended to, but then I changed my mind because that’s a woman’s prerogative apparently. And P/Hop is the knitters’ charity (thanks to Natalie Fergie at Yarn Yard for starting it off – see http://www.p-hop.co.uk for a full explanation) so yeah, why not?
I’ll be raising money for Medeçins Sans Frontieres and have set up the Justgiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/Terri-Bate
I will be funding the travelling with part of my NHS pension (got to leave a bit for the other half to pay what’s left of the mortgage- him indoors, who is keeping the home fires burning) – but also selling the journal sketches for the price of a couple cups of coffee or pints of beer and sending them as postcards from wherever I am to the purchaser (donating a third of what I raise to MSF).”
Terri set off yesterday, and we’re looking forward to following her adventures from here in the shop – we’re going to have a map in the shop to track her travels! If you’d like to follow her progress and (digitally) keep her company, her blog is http://www.tutleymutleytextiles.com/blog.
Bon Voyage, Terri!