After all his detailed explanation of what's wrong with Bantam bicycles on a cycling tour over the past few pages, Holding is now careful to point out that disagreements and "grumbling" have no place on any sort of expedition.
"May not patience and forbearance stifle every cross feeling?"
This was a rather difficult page to figure out, and I'm not sure I've done it justice yet but will leave it here for now in the interests of keeping the momentum going!
We'll be back on the road very soon, heading for Castlebar via Ballylahon...
What's wrong with Bantams? pp16-18
Sailing vs Cycling
Holding and his three companions on the cycling adventure are very experienced sailors as well, having spent much time together all over the British isles for many years. So as part of their time in Ireland they'd naturally taken a couple of their sailing canoes as well - both, incidentally, designed by TH Holding himself.
It's rare that one sentence gets an entire page to itself but it seemed right for both of these, and for this to be a double-page spread of contrast.
Originally, I was just going to show the four figures cycling off into the distance, quite small, a bit like in this draft: ------>>>
But no, I realised it simply had to look like fun or it would make no sense, it wouldn't work! Cycling had to look at least as appealing as the idea of sailing on a lake, which meant an awful lot more drawing!
I also tried spacing the lines at the top to give more sense of... freedom? randomness? but I'm not really sure if that's worked so might possibly put them back as here in the draft.
Next, we discover that two of the bicycles just aren't really fit for purpose...
talking about churches
Not just an experienced expert at camping, sailing, and cycling but knowledgeable about history and all sorts of things including old churches. He comes back to the subject later in the book; this is just an aside, filling time in Foxford whilst waiting to start the trip properly.
introducing the "cuisine"
There's a lot of odd language in this book. Which is one of the things I love about it. Occasionally it needs a footnoted explanation, but wherever possible I'm hoping I can draw my way out of any possible confusion.
Here as the four of them set up a camp from their bicycles for the first time ever, Holding is explaining all the processes and necessities after the tent goes up, including his camp stove:
I looked up that word 'cuisine' and found its archaic meaning was indeed kitchen. Merriam Webster says Etymology: French, literally, kitchen, from Old French, from Late Latin coquina. Whether or not anyone else was using it to mean a portable kitchen like this I have no idea; probably not many were talking about such things anyway! Toward the end of his book (and mine, too) the interior workings of this apparatus are shown in full detail - two wicks, a water bath to avoid overheating... It's quite something!
How to pitch a tent
Well, somehow I thought these pages would be quick and easy, being mostly technical.
But boy was I wrong. Figuring out exactly what was meant by the wording, looking at diagrams of the tent, and trying to show the process reasonably clearly has taken... far more days than I care to admit!
Here's are T.H. Holding's instructions from the book which I had to make sense of:
And here's how these words have been incorporated to show this process, across four pages:
It took so long that I confused myself and had to re-do parts of the third page - page 64 - twice. When I was working on page 65, I mistakenly thought the ground sheet was only being put down then. So I went back and removed it from page 64... and it was only when I looked again at the first page, after uploading it here, that I remembered they had indeed put it down in place first. So re-scanned my coloured-in version and spliced it back in again!
I think I've got this right in the end...
It's late afternoon on the first day of the tour, very windy and looking like it's going to rain, and the four are having a hard time finding a suitable place to pitch their tent...
What's this all about??
I'm making a true-story graphic novel called