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About us

July 2013

Three clergymen are discussing when life begins.  ‘Definitely at conception’ says the Catholic priest.  ‘No, no’ adds the Vicar ‘Life begins at birth’. ‘Well you are both wrong’ replies the Rabbi ‘because Life begins when the dog dies and the children leave home’.

We are Suzanne and Charles Hopwood. Our children are in their 20s and have left home so we decided to rent out our house and travel for the winter 6 months and work for the summer six months every year. We both enjoy cycling: gentle trips to Spain (Mallorca, Murcia, Sierra Nevada) France and UK in the last few years. I am 52, Charles 54, reasonably fit, 50 miles across the Somerset Levels and a climb up The Mendip hills is a big day out for me.

But cycling is in your head, and I’ve surprised myself with some achievements on this trip. Cycling every day is a luxury few achieve, let alone in SE Asia, so we both appreciate how fortunate we are!

Update (July 2014)

We are returning to SE Asia again, starting this time in Japan at the end of October, then to The Philippines.  We will leave Singapore on 1st April and have 3 weeks in Sri Lanka on our way home 🙂


Waterproof panniers and an essential hhelmet

Waterproof panniers and an essential helmet

Lightweight trainers and tevas, also my clip in cycle shoes. Footwear plus kettle,essential clothing, mosquito net and toiletries add up to 7.9kg.

Lightweight trainers and tevas, also my clip in cycle shoes. Footwear plus kettle,essential clothing, mosquito net and toiletries add up to 7.9kg.

Under saddle bag contains  an Aldi raincoat, tyre levers and inner tube

Under saddle bag contains an Aldi raincoat, tyre levers and inner tube

15 Responses to About us

  1. Jan

    Wow! Great pictures. Go Hoppo’s! Have sent post details to Laurence Helena and Chris Squibbs. Thinking of you this week end- hope you are not in a boat but tucked up somewhere sheltered.

  2. Val and Irwin

    Great to chat with you – take care and enjoy your next adventures. Your geography teacher eye is revealed at all points in your blog – such lovely observations of the life you’re seeing – great stuff Suz! I will make sure the Cake Club is also reading!! Much love Valerie and Irwin

    • Jan & Anke

      Nice blog! We saw 15 elephants on our jungletour. It was amazing. After Khao Yai we went to Sukhothai. Wonderfull templecomplexes. After 2 days Lampang we arrived today in Chiang Mai. Our children will arrive tomorrow. We’re all looking forward to it. Your plans changed we understand.

      Merry Christmas and a healthy 2558

      Jan & Anke from the Netherlands

  3. Malcolmapen

    Enjoy your blog ) my blog

  4. Andrea and Paul from Suphanburi

    Hello Suzanne and Charles,

    Just a note to let you know how inspiring meeting you has been!

    I don’t know whether you remember meeting us in Suphanburi, Thailand, but spending the evening walking home from the food market, and the next morning drinking coffee and green tea really did stir us into action!

    Just wanted to let you know that you are often in our conversations e.g. Suzanne and Charles said …. Suzanne and Charles did that …’ etc – and we’re all but off on our own cycling trip from north to south Vietnam

    Hope to email you properly soon – but hope your travels have continued well – and thanks for inspiring confidence in us!

    Andrea and Paul x


      Well done both of you! We speak of you often too: far braver to live and work here. Still using your translations in cafes Andrea but not speaking Thai. You must avoid the busy roads in Vietnam, trains will take your bike, buses too. Use Locus Pro on a tablet and download Vietnam. YouTube will show you how. Cheap, also has gps , been the bedrock of our trip. Also pack what you need then half it!! We carry 12kg and haven’t used some of our stuff! Enjoy ☺ will follow your progress.

      • Andrea

        Can’t thank you enough for your tip regarding the Nexus 7 – it was brilliant! We ended up having a lot of success using Google maps and downloading them for each area – we correlated them with Locus Pro, as Locus seemed to be missing a lot of the smaller roads, and/or leading us up the garden path on more than one occassion! Thank you, thank you, thank you 🙂 And we look forward to sharing Vietnam/Thailand stories and being inspired for more trips the next time we see you – over a glass of wine perhaps!

        Am guessing you’re safely home by now, or nearly there?

        We made contact with your email friend in Bangkok, and will meet up soon 🙂

        Take care,
        Andrea and Paul – Suphanburi

  5. Agata met in Koh Lanta

    Just a quick hello to the two of You. You made my day yesterday…which was an alternate ‘lazy-up & down this bloody hill” one. 🙂
    Thanks and enjoy the rest of your trip.
    Ewa wrote to me yesterday: she’s in Bangkok,having her bike checked up, just in case. 🙂

    All the best 2 the 2 of YOU!



      Great to meet you too Agata. We caught ferry to Had Yao then cycled to Kantang ( road repairs on parts but fine) Only one ‘hotel’ near to station but fine. Then cycled to Little town in Thung Wa district(6am departure) nice Thai town, festival last night, so friendly. Heading to Pak Para today. May see you?

  6. Lynette and Les Price

    Hello Charles, we met in Bath on Sunday. Hope you enjoyed the two tunnels. Josie Dew wrote about cycling around Japan. I am sure you would find it usefull.


      This is Suzanne here: thank you for pointing out Josie Dew to us. Lots of useful information 🙂

  7. David

    Hello Suzanne,

    Good to meet you today, hope you enjoyed the rest of your ride into London.

    I will be looking at your blog to get some inspiration for future trips.

    Enjoy Glastonbury.


  8. Linda and pete

    Hi there

    Tried a couple of times on your email Google address but no response so hope this gets to you

    Email me back so we can be in touch……

    Pete and Linda Isle of Wight

  9. uscsaseale

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