500 Years Ago, Adventure was the Manifestation of Privilege. Living Adventurously 65

!!!The Final Episode of the Podcast!!! Jack Thurston is a cyclist, a food lover, a photographer, a guide-book writer and an early podcast pioneer. We talked about adventures close to home and what the world of 'Adventure' looks like in the 21st Century.

Sadly this is the Final Episode of the Podcast (until I find a new sponsor)! 
Jack Thurston is a cyclist, a food lover, a photographer, a guide-book writer and an early podcast pioneer. He is the host of The Bike Show podcast and author of the Lost Lanes cycling guidebooks. We talked about adventures close to home and what the world of 'Adventure' looks like in the 21st Century.

THIS EPISODE IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY Trees for Cities, the only UK charity working at a national and international scale to improve lives by planting trees in cities.

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Listen on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn (“Alexa, please play the Living Adventurously podcast”) or on your favourite podcast platform such as Overcast, Google Podcasts, Pocket Casts, Breaker, Soundcloud, Castbox, Castro.


  • If you enjoy listening to this episode over a cup of coffee and think it might be worth the price, you can buy me a "coffee" here: www. ko-fi.com/al_humphreys
  • Keep up to date with future episodes (and my other adventures, projects and books) with my free monthly newsletter: alastairhumphreys.com/newsletters
  • Say hello on Twitter and Instagram: @al_humphreys
  • @jackthurston - https://twitter.com/jackthurston
  • Lost Lanes - lostlanes.co.uk
  • The Bike Show podcast has been running since 2005 
  • Alastair Humphreys on the Bike Show - http://thebikeshow.net/alastair_humphreys_part1/
  • Podcasts don't usually make money. But you have to do something that you love - that is the price of entry.
  • Bike Show tries to pick up sounds and experiences - the sonic colour - from outside the studio
  • There are different kinds of audio perfection
  • Asking open questions is important. Ask them how they feel. Get beyond the facts into the emotion.
  • Conversation ought to be structured but also feel natural
  • If you let silence happen, people will fill it with something interesting
  • You need to give the audience what they are interested in
  • Louis Theroux podcast - https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p089sfrz/episodes/downloads
  • Cheryl Strayed podcast - Sugar Calling - https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/sugar-calling/id1505881384
  • There are so many different methods of cycling.
  • Cycling is a great way to interact with the environment
  • raphael kraft caribbean cycling podcast - https://thebikeshow.net/raphael-krafft-reportage-on-two-wheels/
  • Cycling breaks down barriers, gets you unexpected places, and you are not cut off from the world. Therefore it is a good way to have experiences.
  • The bicycle is a tool to take in the world at the right pace (and at the right price)
  • Jack is a touring cyclist and a utility cyclist
  • Takes kids to school on the bike. Does the shopping on the bike.
  • You can travel further, for less effort, than walking. It's the perfect vehicle for travelling at the speed of the land and of my mind.
  • fuchsia dunlop every grain of rice - https://www.amazon.co.uk/Every-Grain-Rice-Chinese-Cooking/dp/140880252X
  • Jack's spice concoction for cycle touring - https://www.instagram.com/p/CDqv79llTaT/
  • Jack takes tins of sardines, marzipan, parmesan, harissa on a bike tour
  • I like a bike ride that starts and finishes at my front door
  • Jack has done a lot of flying in his life, but now is repulsed by the connotations. It makes him feel queasy.
  • Has committed to not flying for work
  • Things (like not flying) which seem difficult to consider are actually not that hard once you do them
  • There are a lot of issues related to 'adventure' that are problematic
  • Adventure is a useful word for the sort of things we do - embracing the unexpected as a leisure activity
  • To me 'adventure' has a lot of baggage from history
  • 500 years ago adventure was the manifestation of privilege - colonial expansion right up to Edwardian's doing it for 'queen and country'
  • Money, power, privilege, whiteness were the preconditions for adventure
  • People doing adventure - voluntarily putting themselves in harm's way. If danger is a normal part of your life then you're probably unlikely to want to go bungee jumping
  • Jack enjoys wild camping, but acknowledges that if he didn't look the way he does [white] then it would be a much more intimidating experience
  • Cycling guidebooks over 100 years ago
  • Wanted to make the Lost Lanes books seductive
  • Make going out for a ride around London really appealing: nice photos, make it look appealing, eat oysters by the sea rather than get sweaty, evocative writing
  • Living in London in the 90s Jack had to come up with stories / temptations to lure his flatmates to come out of the city and ride with him
  • The book is supposed to fire up people's imaginations, and then the website has the technical details
  • Emphasis of Lost Lanes is on very quite lanes and roads
  • Yorkshire Wolds
  • Beverley Minster
  • Somerset Levels
  • Samuel Palmer, artist
  • What makes a good bike route? Needs a good sense of flow. You don't want all the climbing at the start/end, need different landscapes, good reveals, good vistas, hills are important for the views, try to start in interesting nice places with a train station, the sense of having been on a journey and discovering landscapes
  • On a longer journey it is good to have some sort of quest involved.
  • TE Lawrence cycling round castles.
  • One more croissant for the road
  • Nice to follow a river, or a pilgrimage route, or a droving road
  • Beating the bounds
  • Being a freelance writer makes financial security a worry
  • I've never earned less than in my 40s
  • Mr Money Mustache - https://www.mrmoneymustache.com/
  • I don't feel that my life is any less rich because I drive a crappy car
  • I like old, traditional, simple stuff
  • Hallett handbuilt bicycles - http://www.halletthandbuiltcycles.com/
  • I think it's really important to have something that you do is a lifelong journey. It is quite humbling
  • It still feels a joy being out on the road researching his books. It's pure pleasure. The writing-up part fills him with dread and makes him feel sick.
  • Maria Popova - https://www.brainpickings.org/
  • English country lanes, the art of slow travel - Gareth Lovett Jones

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© 2019 Alastair Humphreys