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Simon Parker

Sunday 29th - 11:30

'Finally, I emerged onto a sealed asphalt walkway, with twigs in my hair and blood streaming down my legs. Feeling like David Livingstone without a machete, I had tamed the impenetrable woodlands of Eastern Mississippi. Hurrah! But then my sense of adventure sobered suddenly, when a woman in yoga pants and flipflops wandered past, walking a Bichon Frise.’ Frustrated by the shallow headlines focusing only on Trump, guns and divisions, award-winning travel writer Simon Parker decided that to better understand the USA he would have to travel across it, slowly. Did the America of his teenage dreams really exist? And was it really as fractured as the headlines suggest? On his journey to find out, Simon cycled 4,373 miles through eleven states and numerous extreme weather events, via mountains and prairie lands, forests and freeways. Along the way he visited homes, schools, churches and rodeos, meeting hundreds of(extra)ordinary Americans behind the clickbait news posts to discover a nation whose portrayal has become vastly oversimplified.

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