A Breath of Fresh Air

How I'm getting back out into the countryside whilst living with MS


I’ve decided to place my blog into hibernation. I started it as I wanted to share the difference in outlook that our tandem had brought to my life, now that MS is part of it. I hope that I’ve been able to get across how it’s helped me, not only to get outside again, but to actively try to be out in as many different ways as possible. And not just to be outside but to be immersed in the countryside once more, to get muddy and rained on and to smell the grass in sheep-nibbled fields again.

enjoying a summer evening

enjoying a summer evening

I don’t want to become repetitive so I thought I’d take a break. I shall only be taking a break from writing the blog though – definitely not from having adventures! We shall continue to cycle, bumping along uneven paths, to track down more bird-watching haunts and to splash about in the canoe. I might even try something new again if something catches my eye. I know it would be worth my while.

by Hebden Water

by Hebden Water

In the meantime, I’ve loved hearing from other people who have tried out new ways of adventuring, be it by adapted cycle, tramper or horse riding.

a little damp on the Camel Trail!

a little damp on the Camel Trail!

We have a weekend away coming up with EMpowered people which I’m looking forward to. It will be good to mix with others who have similar tales to tell again, and to swap our experiences. There are many more Lakeland tarns to glide across and the wheelchair is getting used to being pushed along unlikely paths.

muddy Pennine paths

muddy Pennine paths

Then there’s the Paralympics coming up soon, and when I start to feel a little bit inadequate in the face of their superhuman efforts, I can remind myself of just what I am achieving. Just as the Olympics inspire people to try something out, the Paralympics remind me that I have adapted my life to get out there and do something – there will be no hibernating for me!

tandem happy amongst the sheep

tandem happy amongst the sheep

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14 thoughts on “Hibernation

  1. Well I will miss reading about your adventures. I certainly understand your wanting to take a break. Maybe when you get fired up again on your next chapter you will have a different inspiration. Even if it is your daily adventure from point A to point B which we know can be the bedroom to the sofa! Hugs

  2. Hi Mary. I am sorry to see your adventures disappear from the internet, but whatever you do, I will support it. Within reason of course. I live in West Michigan, USA, and was diagnosed with 2ndryPMS in April of 2012. Because of it I quit working towards the end of 2014 and started following MS blogs, like yours. I looked up where the Yorkshire Pennines were, well, because I had no idea where they were. I, like many MSers, was very active in my pre MS life. I looked forward to reading your words, and viewing the pictures of you and Tim’s adventures on the tandem. I feel as though I have been to the UK, when physically I never have. Thank you and God bless. (Hopefully, I end up in the UK again someday.)


    • Thank you for those lovely words. It is wonderful how the internet provides a window into different parts of the world. I hope you are able to keep active in some way.

  3. Your writing and photos are beautiful! You paint such a great of the adventures of life, finding ways to embrace each and every one. Have fun, be well and look forward to reading about the adventures you’ve explored! 🙂

    • Thank you so much Cath. It has been great fun putting the photos and words together. I hope to get about lots more and may find I just have to share what happens!

  4. Thanks for creating a third seat for those of us who have joined you. Enjoy every trip, every view and every breath you take. May God bless you as you travel forward.

  5. Martin B on said:

    Hi Mary, sorry to hear you are ‘hibernating’ – we have enjoyed keeping up with your exploits. You could always consider putting up a single image and a brief comment every week, just to keep in touch with folk?

  6. You’ve been quietly inspiring Mary — thank you. I shall be thinking of you as I continue to enjoy the great Yorkshire countryside, and who knows, perhaps I will be able to persuade my lovely partner to venture onto a tandem. Wishing you all the very best.

    • Thank you Edwina, those words mean a lot. I hope you are able to persuade your husband onto a tandem – it’s great to see the fields flowing past as you ride along!

  7. Hi from Cycling Otherwise. So sorry to hear that you are ‘hibernating’ for a while, but understand your reasoning. Like the others your experiences will be missed. In the mean time, don’t give up on the writing! How about writing a review of your wheel chair for our Cycling Otherwise site? You are clearly the sort of person who pushes kit to its limits which is just the sort of experience needed for a review.

    • Hello there,
      Haha, yes, I think my poor wheelchair wonders what it will be in for next … not sure it’s what the manufaturers had in mind! Maybe I’ll have to do some sort of review …

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