In 2003, two years after we were married, my wife Nicky and I cycled 2000 kms around southern India on a tandem. It was joyous journey.
Eleven years later we were planning for a summer of tandem cycling with our two young daughters when Nicky was diagnosed with a brain tumour and died.
She was 47, an actress, fit, strong and beautiful. During Nicky’s short illness and the immediate aftermath of her death I wrote about what was happening and published it to Facebook. I did this partly to keep friends and family informed of the hideous quick progress of Nick’s illness, and partly because it became a therapy. I have published those posts here as they were dated on Facebook. These posts received many very helpful comments which you can still see there.
The death of partner, particularly one as loved as Nicky was, brings with it an immense sense of loss. One mourns the person, but one also mourns the loss of the future. Nicky and I were starting a business together, we looked forward to seeing our children grow up, to a delightful future growing old together (dis)gracefully. At the moment of her death all that was stolen from me. I, and my children were robbed by the cruel malicious motherfucker in her brain.
In the depths of my grief I made a decision to go ahead with our plans to cycle the girls across France, not on two tandems, but on a bicycle made for three. This is the story of that journey, a rolling recovery from the theft of all hope of future happiness. It’s a new shaped family adventure, it’s blog of personal record and reflection and it’s an exploration of grief with the bicycle and the journey as a metaphor and motif for all those, particularly men, experiencing grief.