This page was last updated Thu 05 January 2017.

Contents: Tours (1)   

Reports by Christopher J.A. Smith

All descriptions are in English, unless otherwise noted.

Tours

16,500 miles and thirteen months cycling from the United Kingdom to Beijing
by Christopher J.A. Smith, tour started May 2000, submitted 22 February 2006

This website accompanies the book ``Why Don't You Fly?'' (ISBN 1-905203-25-X published by Pen Press).

How does it feel to trade comfort and security for life as a nomad and to pare one's life down to the bare necessities? What is it like to push at the frontiers of one's physical and mental endurance?

``Why Don't You Fly?'' is the account of an epic adventure in search of an elusive sense of identity in which triumph, disappointment, discomfort, exhaustion and exhilaration all trade positions against a backdrop of prodigious physical endeavour. During a gruelling 16,500-mile examination of physical and mental stamina the author ate and drank in roadside cafés in the company of inquisitive lorry drivers and shared dormitories in remote Chinese villages with fascinated farm hands and gleeful mosquitoes. Sceptical western existentialism met religious fatalism in the restaurants and teahouses of the Middle East and India in the course of a physical and spiritual journey that constantly raised questions about the attitudes and values that prevail in the West.

The Website includes a chapter-by-chapter synopsis of the book, a sample chapter and 93 photographs.