Hong Kong: First I will start with the good news. I have (slightly) surpassed my fundraising target of US$30,000 for A New Day Cambodia. These funds will support the 100 children who have been rescued from scavenging the municipal dump of Phnom Penh. To reach this fundraising target it took much longer than the 50 days I spent cycling across a continent, and it was much, much harder. How I got over the financial finish line is a story I want to share, because it oozes with good karma.
In late September I was about US$4,500 short of my target as some pledges surprisingly did not materialize. Without knowing the specifics of my fundraising situation, the good people at Disney Channel in Singapore heard about my ride and decided upon A New Day Cambodia as the beneficiary of a regular internal charitable effort. Guess how much the employees of Disney Channel Asia collectively contributed? US$4,700, just enough to get me over the top. That’s what I call good karma and extraordinary generosity.
There’s more karma. Over the past few weeks, through coincidence and good old-fashioned networking, I have made contact with several other extreme long distance cyclists. These interactions affirm my new goal of, eventually, cycling around the world. I’ve come into contact with a Brit who us currently cycling pan-Eurasia from Hong Kong to London. Next week I will meet Mark Beaumont, the author of “The Man Who Cycled the World.” Shortly thereafter I look forward to meeting Rob Lilwall, who recently relocated to Hong Kong also authored a book — “Cycling Home From Siberia” — and starred in an eponymous National Geographic series. In early December I will have dinner with a former Hollywood studio executive (sound familiar?) who cycled around the world a decade ago. Finally, a friend has introduced me to an Australian couple who are planning to cycle across South America.
All these encounters are helping to shape and to stimulate my new cycling ambitions.
Finally, last week in Los Angeles I caught up with three fellow cyclists from this summer — Michael, Matt, and Alex — and we had a great time rekindling and reminiscing about the good ‘ole days of summer 2010 spinning across America.
After all these interactions, I am convinced some things are just meant to be. Karma. Very good karma.