#strangersnomore: Excerpts from Rajat's Bike Tour across Latin America

Updated: Jan 9

We welcomed Rajat to be our first guest at Our Slug Life who embraces to be #strangersnomore . We unfolded with a quick Q&A to learn about his recent and first ever Solo Bicycle Tour that too across the borders. The twist isn't that he is known for his crazy personality but, that he pedalled across Latin America never being a cyclist himself. While his journey has been inspiring, Rajat wasn’t just riding he was truly living every moment on his bike, turning strangers to family in a new country.

It's not so common to find cyclists who are enjoying the non-competitive side of it.

Lets find out what Rajat has to say about his endearing journey..

Imagine we met for the first time, how would you introduce yourself to us? Where are you riding currently?

Greetings from Ecuador as I am traveling with a bike-touring setup. I am a person figuring out life as it comes with each experiment tried. You could find me dancing alone in the middle of the Amazon forest, hiking some beautiful mountains and volcanoes, hitchhiking in Mexico all this while I sometimes work a corporate job in the burning Delhi. I have a constant thirst for adventure, which encourages me to set myself on unconventional paths. I like to run, not away from anything, but towards things that are new and challenging, things which are far away from monotony, that inspire me to be kinder and empathise with the less privileged. I am not a city dweller by any means (don't know where I'll end though) and believe that life is to explore and experience firsthand. I appreciate simpler ways of living in a society that thrives with diversity.

Tell us which parts of the world are flagged on your map so far? Is there a milestone which marks the beginning of your journey as a bicycle tourer?

So far, I have been to 7 countries in Central America - Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama and 2 countries in South America - Colombia and Ecuador. All on my first bicycle tour! Let’s take a detour so I could tell you of the stone that flipped my life. After quitting my job in August 2017, I took a backpacking trip to Latin America with a plan to hitchhike from Mexico to Argentina. Unfortunately, I had to end my trip after 4 months and join back work in India. With a strong urge to return to Latin America, I was evidently unable to focus for the 2 months that I stretched myself at work so I finally concluded that I must figure out what to do next by quitting once and for all. That was when the idea to cycle instead of backpacking this time struck me. I knew it was possible as I had hosted some bicycle tourers in India in past and was part of a Facebook group where bicycle tourers from across the globe shared their experiences. The thought did feel crazy to me then, not being a cyclist as I did not even have a bicycle in India but, I was excited to try this. “Should be more adventurous than backpacking”, I thought. That's how I bought my first bicycle in India in August of 2018, spoke to a cyclist friend, who gave me a training schedule for 3-4 weeks and in 6 weeks of time, mid-September, I was in Mexico to fl