Wow! Mum read an awesome book about a cat who’s on a ‘round the world trip with a guy on a bicycle. I’m not sure I want to travel on a bicycle—or at all—but it’s a grand adventure story. And it’s not fiction. It’s true.
Nala was a tiny kitten, when Dean, a cyclist from Scotland, found her on the side of a mountain road in Bosnia, at least ten miles from the nearest town. He couldn’t believe it when what he thought might be a squeak in his rear wheel turned out to be a kitten meowing. How could she have turned up on a mountain road in the middle of nowhere?
Well, I can answer that question. Someone in a pickup truck threw me into a bush in midtown Atlanta when I was a “wee thing” as Dean would say. I bet that’s what happened to Nala, whom Dean named for the lioness in “The Lion King.”
What a lucky kitty. Not only did Dean hear her, but he also decided to take her along on his journey. He left Scotland, determined to cycle around the world with a friend. When his friend bailed on him, he went his merry way alone. Finding Nala meant he had a new companion. Maybe you’ve seen the video of their adventure on the youtube video posted by Dodo. If you haven’t, you don’t know what you’re missing.
Yes, Nala, is lucky, but so is Dean. He says she’s given him a new outlook on life, and their relationship has changed him. I think all cats can have a positive influence on their peeps, given a chance, but this tale is an exceptional example of the power of one tiny kitty.
Dean and Nala sleep most nights in a tent, and Nala loves it. Again, I might like spending a bit of time playing in a tent, but every night? No way. I like my beds. The more Mum read, the more I learned about all the accouterments Nala has. She has toys and a harness and a pet carrier for the back of the bike, though she prefers riding up front on the handlebars where she can keep an eye on Dean and take in the scenery. The first day, she left the bike bag, climbed up his arm to his shoulders, and wrapped herself around his neck. How cute is that?
When she developed a chest cold after the two were caught in a downpour, they spent three weeks in a hostel instead of a tent so she could recover, and she enjoyed that too. She’s quite a hit, not only with people the two encounter on the journey but also on Instagram and YouTube. Dean has GoPro camera plus a drone with a camera and is forever posting photos of their adventures.
Mum says she was skeptical about how good the book would be, but it turned out she couldn’t put it down. Well, I could have told her that would be the case. What’s not to love about a book with a cat in it? She enjoyed it so much, she now follows Nala and Dean on FaceBook at 1bike1world. Yup, she’s hooked.
You know my Mum writes the Dickens & Christie cozy mystery series, and Christie, the sassy black cat in her books, rides in a backpack when her owner goes on walks. Thankfully, Mum hasn’t tried that with me. I’ve made it clear I’m happy observing the world from the screened porch and Dad’s lap. I’m a little worried, though, because Mum has a bicycle with a pouch on the front. Goodness knows what I’ll do if she gets the idea I need a bicycle ride. Repeat after me, “No bike, no way.”