Strokes to Spokes – Week One


Early morning mist across the rice fields and palm trees near Skun, Cambodia.

Early morning view from my guesthouse near Skun Cambodia

Every journey starts with a single step. This week I began a huge step in my life and the first week has come and gone without a hitch. Strokes to Spokes began seven days ago. I rode five of the first seven days for a total of 309 miles. I planned a day off in Phnom Penh to look for a tripod head which was hard to find but I was successful. As I neared the southern part of Cambodia I kept thinking about the excellent food at Ciao! in Kampot so I headed that way and spent an extra day in one of my favorite Cambodian cities.

This is the rainy season in Cambodia and I expect to ride in rain from time to time. On the second day I had to get out my rain jacket for about twenty minutes of rain on my way into Skun. Riding into Kampot was a day full of rain in addition to a stiff headwind most of the day. Thoughts of the ravioli dinner waiting for me kept me focused on the road. Read More

Strokes to Spokes

Me and my new Surly Long Haul Trucker Bicycle at the Let's Touring bicycle shop in Bangkok.

Picking up my new bicycle at Let’s Touring in Bangkok

Help Keep Me On the Road
Thank you for your Support!

When I suffered an ischemic stroke twenty-six months ago just about every aspect of my life flashed through my mind. That happened in the first five minutes as I woke in the middle of the night to a  half-paralyzed body faced with the challenge of getting help in a third world country. It amazes me how much self-evaluation can take place in such a short time. You can read about that experience here. With all of the things going through my mind at the time one thing I didn’t think about was riding a bicycle.

The thought of learning to eat with chopsticks using my left hand and creative ways I was going to have to come up with to control my camera kept my mind occupied as I dragged myself across my apartment floor with one functioning leg and arm.

For the moment my future consisted not of years, but minutes. While lying on the floor I could only wonder what my stroke recovery prognosis would be. What would I be able to do after a stroke? Or more importantly what wouldn’t I be able to do after a stroke? Read More

They Call It Progress

Banteay Ampil Temple in Cambodia

Banteay Ampil Temple

Soon after I moved to Cambodia in late 2015 my explorations of the countryside started. The excitement never diminishes each time I made it to a new temple. I am never deterred even when it takes three or four attempts to make it all the way to my quest for the day. It was during these early months that I learned about Cambodian roads, Google maps and the lay of the land. This was also the time I was beginning to fall in love with the roads in Cambodia. One of my early attempts at locating ancient Cambodian temples was Banteay Ampil.  Read More

Cambodia Gyms

Do you like to exercise while on vacation? Minimizing the luggage we carry with us makes bringing  travel weights a cumbersome option. Looking for a place to work out while traveling through Cambodia? Do you become a different animal if you don’t get in regular workouts? Are those calories from the amok, fried bananas and smoothies building up? Do you worry how uncomfortable you will feel in the economy seat on your long airplane ride home? Are you wondering how to maintain your fitness in Cambodia?

Working out on vacation isn’t for everyone but if you just don’t feel human without getting your workouts this post can help. Sometimes it is difficult to find a place to work out or you may wonder if there was a better one nearby when you are in an unfamiliar city. I have been many places in Cambodia and I have tried many Cambodia gyms. If travel fitness is something you crave I hope this list helps you out. Read More

I Mailed Myself to Phnom Penh

Post Office, Cambodia, Van Sim Reap, Phnom Penh

The van that took me from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh, Cambodia

I Mailed Myself to Phnom Penh

Siem Reap Phnom Penh. How do I get from one to the other? Living in Siem Reap for over two years I have had the opportunity to go to Phnom Penh many times by taxi, motorcycle or bicycle. I am aways looking for new places to go and new ways to get there so as I contemplated my next adventure I wondered: Can I mail myself to Phnom Penh?

It turns out I can. Read More