Travel is the most freeing and fulfilling experience you can go through and who you travel with can be as crucial to the atmosphere of the trip as where you are going.
In September 2018, 31 year old Dean Nicholson from Scotland was hell bent on solo cycling around the world starting at his hometown of Dunbar, Scotland.
This plan changed along the way when Dean crossed the Bosnian border into Montenegro and was joined by the most unlikely travel companion. This is truly one of the most interesting travelling stories to come out of 2018.
When heading up a steep hill Nicholson heard the sound of a desperate meow coming from behind him. When he turned around he noticed it was a little kitten he decided to stop only to pat it but the tiny kitten had other ideas as she began to be affectionate towards Nicholson. She refused to leave his side. Although he did not plan to take the kitty at first he slowly grew to love her.
Since the kitten was found in the middle of the nowhere Nicholson figured she would be incredibly hungry. The kittens previous owner intentionally dumped her where she wa later found. Nicholson took her to the vet and named her Nala after the character from his favourite movie, 'The Lion King. He then proceeded to take Nala with him.
Nicholson had to be creative making space for Nala. Initially he didn't have space for Nala but after moving equipment, made space for her in the front basket allowing her to lead the way.
Before long, Nala's personality came through. She quickly become loving, chilled, relaxed and showed no sign of discomfort with travelling. Nala occasionally jumps out of the basket and sits on Nicholson’s shoulder. Nala frequently attracts people around her who ask for a picture.
You can not part these two as they travel from one interesting location to another with Nala on Nicholson’s shoulder at every step of the way. They really are the best travel companions.
At the conclusion of the year Nicholson didn't want to stop travelling so they continued through all sorts of weather. This resulted in Nala getting a chest infection. This made Nicholson realise how much she means to him and that he doesn't want to lose her so he stayed in a hostel while she recovers. Nala recovered really quickly with Nicholson's assistance and once they organised a more water proof setup for her. This made their connection even stronger.
The pair have come a long way. When Nicholson started, all he wanted to do was cycle around the world but he found a great companion in Nala.
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