Jeremy Scott may have started life with a big hole in his heart but he has certainly demonstrated he has a heart, a beauty that has got him 52,000km across the globe on a push bike.  As a young boy Jeremy couldn't do much at all.  He struggled as a toddler to get across a room and certainly couldn't run.  Then in 1977 he went under the knife of Sir Brian Barrett-Boyes and by age 7 was playing soccer, cricket and tennis like any other Kiwi Kid.  Fast forward a few years and having spent a few years in the UK working for Pascall and Watson (http://www.pascalls.co.uk/) he stumbled across a copy of the T&T magazine with 3 articles about cycling trips and wondered whether he could do all 3.  That was 2004 - the idea remained a germ that kept getting pushed to the back of his mind as things like obtaining a UK Passport and permanent resident status got addressed. He saved by reducing his spend at the local figuring that a pint in a London pub was equivalent to 1 nights accommodation in SE Asia.  Eventually having told everyone he was going, buying a bike and gear to travel halfway around the world he woke up on the day he was supposed to leave - packed and left for New Zealand. 
 
Not having done a trial pack and not having practiced riding with full panniers he found the whole trip overwhelming at first.  Initially this lead to discarding of excess clothing and toiletries but by focussing on the first goal of Brussels he got there.  10 weeks later he was across Europe and in Istanbul, thinner, bearded and a different man.  Envigorated by the sights and sounds of Istanbul he survived the traffic and fumes and headed across Turkey into the worst winter for over 50years.  Partially frost bitten cheeks seemed to be the only near permanent injury as a result of the severe brass monkey weather with temperatures dropping to -40degrees at night and increasing by 10am to -20 so he could move on.  He became a late night diner who was hard to push out into the freezing night and potential death.  Looking forward to Iran which contains many fascinating sights and a rich history he was devastated to get waylaid by a drug ring operating out of a late night restaurant.  Pressing a gun on him he figured was unloaded it was made clear he had no choice but to stay or be killed as drug dealing in Iran is highly illegal and punished harshly.  Fortunately 4 guests entered the restaurant and so with innocent witnesses present he was able to leave and cycle off into the night without lights.  40km later he stumbled upon an ambulance station and was given shelter for the night.  Later he met a goat herder in the middle of nowhere who insisted he stop.  This seemingly penniless man then cooked him a meal for one and insisted he eat then saw him on his way.  This was one of many encounters that opened his mind to the best of humanity.
 
As an example of what can be achieved if we don't put up excuses to stop us doing something he described a French couple he met.  The man had been cycling for 5 weeks when his partner flew to Turkistan to join him.  She had delayed her start to save more money for the trip.  Arriving at the airport with a bike she had never assembled before she loaded it up and stated cycling - with no training she was cycling over a 3,800m pass 1 week later. Sacre' bleu! They carried on across Asia and apparently into Canada at least.  Riding fully loaded meant carrying 35 - 40kg typically but up to 70kg across desert sections with the need for extra water and food.  Border crossings saw him at time sleeping in the border guards offices to play the waiting game for a visa and to get into China forging documents for flights as cyclists would not be let in.  The first time he was enveloped in a sandstorm he had nowhere to shelter so just got on his bike and rode.  He had no ski goggles then but now reckons they are essential to deal with sandstorms.  On across Chine into South Korea across to Japan and back he cycled then in Vietnam came across a man whose brother had not survived an operation 2 years prior to his own conducted by the same surgeon - Brian Barrett Boyes.  More than ever he realised he had been given a real chance at life by Sir Brian and the NZ Heart Foundation who had supported Brian Barrett-Boyes research.
 
On down through Malaysia, across Indonesia and into Australia he cycled from Darwin to Cairns with his 70 year old Uncle and Aunt - a couple of doughty Rotarians.  Saddle sore perhaps but pretty game all the same.  Melbourne to Christchurch and almost home and no more borders.  A journey or rediscovery around the South Island anti-clockwise then north to the Auckland Medical school and journeys end on 25th May 2014 having left London on 5th October 2011.  The Long Road of a Broken Heart - and no tale of unrequited love behind it.  A nephew unable to explain really what his uncle was doing raising money for the Heart Foundation had described him to his classmates as "riding around the world with a broken heart".    But having been hospitalised in Thailand after a centipede bit, getting between a mother bear and her cub in Japan and turning the tables on wild dogs in Turkey - chasing them with a knife and chain we would do some things differently.  We won't be planning his nest trip in detail just deciding where to start then spending 2 weeks talking to locals about his next move.  A damaged anterior cruciate ligament put his travels off  by a year so hopes not to repeat that exercise but considers budgeting on 400UK pounds a month on average quite manageable (although some may find that sleeping in public lavatories - even the clean ones in Japan would justify a higher budget).  He did not have much to recommend border guards in Turkmenistan and described China's border as a "difficult crossing" and advised there were always "taxes" to be paid at border crossings. 
 
He describes his travels in a stunning collection of photographs he has taken and now presented in his book "The Long Way Road from a Broken Heart".  He donates 10% of the proceeds from the sale of each book to the NZ Heart Foundation (htp://www.heartfoundation.org.nz/shop/product_view/19787/jeremy-scotts-book-the-long-road-from-a-broken-heart).   So 52,000km, 7 punctures and 4 sets of tyres and an unknown quantity of sweat and a lifetime of memories and a new perspective on life he is now in Melbourne but will be back next year.
 
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