As reported last month, Josie is about to set off across Europe for Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania and possibly Russia.

Next month we will have more news on her next cycling adventure book, Slow Coast Home (published in September), but in the meantime here is a history of Josie’s cycling nightmares. . .

1982 – The Lake District. Riding up mountain when encounter first ever flasher. Not a pleasant sight.

1985 – Cycling to Africa with Ward (scouser boyfriend) when he gets the voyage off to a bad start by dropping whole jar of runny honey in tent. Fifteen years later the tent is still sticky.

1985 – Algeria. Find myself obliged to pee in front of Algerian family (all seventy-five members) who stand and watch. Not surprisingly, bladder proves bashful. Result: confusion all round.

1986 – Spain. Van crashes into Ward who lands on helmet-less head and looks as good as dead.

1987 – Iceland. By mistake eat rotten shark and rams testicles (supposedly national delicasies).

1987 – Norway. Set only functioning pair of homemade cycling shorts on fire when camping out on a limb in fjord-land.

1987 – Czechoslovakian-Austrian border. Have gun pointed at me by man springing out of bushes.

1988 – Portugal. Crash into Mel (brother’s girlfriend) on mountain pass when cycling to Morocco. For two months we had fretted about being run over by mad motoring Iberians who swerved and skidded and slalomed round us all day, but instead we crash into each other. No cars involved. Result: me – buckled bicycle; Mel – buckled body.

1988 – Spain. Camping with Mel in wheatfield when tent surrounded by gang of flashers. Sent them beating a hasty retreat when we put to use our scrambled together weaponry supply: Swiss Army knife, bicycle pump, Perry whistle and cup of fresh pee. (My self-defence course had taught me that, if thrown in the face, urine’s acidity stings the eyes. Pepper would have been more convenient but we were out of stock).

1988 – Morocco. Unmprompted a Tuareg (Blue Man of the Desert) reveals what lies beneath his indigo-dyed robes.

1989 – India. Spend a month in Delhi hospital after crashing into Geordie friend when riding in Himalayas. But worth it for the hospital chapattis.

1990 – Austria. Cycling alone en-route to Eastern Europe when had one of those days when nothing goes right: burnt porridge, lost a sock, attacked by fat Fraulein and, in freezing headwind downpour, collided at speed with a cow. Then was besieged by three separate flashers – one of which was a BMW-driving pin-stripe business man. I ask you.

1990 – Bulgaria. Near death experience when attacked by drunken mad man who tried to rape me, stab me and throw me over side of fifth floor balcony.

1991 – London. Jack-knife with dinner-laden cycle trailer in Picadilly Circus sending much pampered multi-storeyed meringue cake beneath wheels of bus.

1992 – USA. Narrowly miss being sucked up by tornado.

1994 – Japan. Narrowly miss being sucked up by typhoon.

1993 – Vancouver Island. Encounter dustbin-hurling black bear.

1993 – Romantic liason goes awry amid the cactus deserts of Baja California, Mexico.

1995 – Get job as bosun’s mate assistant on 132ft brigantine and sail with bike across East China Sea to Japan but hit tail end of typhoon. Result: stomach far from happy.

1996 – Attacked by backfiring bicycle pump, Ecuador.

1996 – 2000: Suffer from dodgy knee syndrome.

2001 – Rocked by minor earthquake in Havant.

2002 – Rocked by tidal wave on Lake Windermere.