When I joined my present company, (Volantis Systems) one of the benefits was a sabbatical of four weeks to be taken after five years service. The company has been going over six years now, and the time has come to take advantage of that benefit. I've never had a sabbatical before. The attraction to me was to do something that wouldn't be possible with normal vacation time. After a lot of pondering I decided to cycle the length of mainland Britain.
If you know anything about the famous Land's End to John O'Groats routes, you'll know that a month is far more time than is necessary for the direct trip. Most people seem to manage the 900 or so miles in a couple of weeks. Since I have a whole extra two weeks, I decided to include some sightseeing in Scotland.
To complicate matters further, in the middle of the trip, I have to be in Edinburgh to give a paper at the W4A2006 conference. This conference focusses on issues concerned with access to the Web for people with disabilities. The result is a trip of more like 1600 miles, a much more suitable distance for four weeks in the saddle.