In September we waved goodbye (for now) to two members of our team, Jaimi Wilson and Lisa Irving, as they donned their backpacks and set off on their separate travelling adventures.
Jaimi Wilson has worked in our Audit and Accounts team for over six years training to become a Chartered Accountant during her time at David Allen before leaving us for the adventure of a lifetime in September. Always a fan of staying fit and a keen member of CrossFit Cumbria, Jaimi decided that she was going to cycle the world setting off from Penrith with only her bike and a trailer carrying her possessions – we now catch up with Jaimi in Spain.
So far Jaimi has cycled a staggering 6,000km (over 3,700 miles) with her fully loaded bike (which weighs 65 kilos!) and is currently staying in Barcelona where she will spend the Christmas period (enjoying a well-deserved four week break). She is staying in Barcelona with a family who have two young children, and during her time with them she will be teaching the children to speak English (while taking some Spanish lessons herself). Jaimi’s journey so far has been amazing; she has cycled from her home near Penrith down to Portsmouth where she got on the ferry to Caen in France, cycling to Tours, then along the Loire Valley to Nantes and down the west coast of France. She then journeyed across the Pyrenees into Spain to cycle the Camino de Santiago from St-Jean-Pied-de-Port to Santiago de Compostela. This route was particularly beautiful and is a well-known pilgrimage route, along which she met many people walking the hundreds of kilometres as a pilgrimage.
Jaimi then cycled down the west coast of Portugal, along the south coast and back into southern Spain where she cycled to Sevilla, Grenada through the Sierra Nevada mountain range, venturing up to Trevélez which is one of the highest inhabited villages in Spain at an elevation of almost 5,000 feet! From there she cycled to Almeria in the south of Spain following the coast up to Barcelona. In amongst all the cycling Jaimi has managed to fit in some sightseeing, CrossFit, running, surfing and climbing – we don’t know how she has the energy!
Luckily Jaimi has only had one fall off her bike so far – while being chased by four dogs in Spain – escaping with only a couple of cuts and bruises. Initially Jaimi set off on her journey with a friend but she is now travelling on her own, with various friends, family (and hopefully some of her David Allen colleagues) going out to different locations to enjoy small stretches of her journey by her side.
Lisa Irving, one of our Administration Assistants has always dreamed of travelling and seeing Asia and she has certainly made the most of her time travelling so far! Setting off from Newcastle Airport, Lisa travelled to Bangkok where she spent her first few nights before catching the train up to Chiang Mai in Northern Thailand. While in Chiang Mai Lisa visited the Wat Phra That Doi Suthep (Doi Suthep) temple before taking the slow boat over to Luang Prabang in northern Laos. In Luang Prabang Lisa watched the serving of the monks at 6am before heading to Vang Vieng and the 4,000 islands of Si Phan Don (pictured is the sunset in Don Det).
Lisa left Laos to visit Cambodia where she spent time in Angkor Wat (Capital Temple) soaking up the amazing history that Cambodia has to offer. She then spent time teaching local children in a floating village before leaving Cambodia for Vietnam. In Vietnam Lisa spent 21 days visiting 10 different areas enjoying canoeing in Dalat and abseiling off the beautiful waterfalls, quad biking over the sand dunes, and even enjoying an eight hour motorbike ride from Dong Hoi to Hue. She spent time in the Phong Nha-Kẻ Bàng National Park exploring the spectacular caves and hiring a scooter to take in the natural beauty of the park before exploring Halong Bay on canoes.
Lisa is currently in Ko Tao and is spending Christmas on Thailand’s beautiful gulf islands, enjoying the sunshine and white sandy beaches.
We are so proud of both Jaimi and Lisa and are very jealous of their amazing journeys so far, we hope they have a fantastic Christmas and look forward to hearing more of their stories when they return to David Allen in the future.