If you don’t know Mel from The Drive Show, here’s one quick fact: she LOVES animals. She loves them so much so wants to share it with the family. So once a week she shares one of her favourite Furry Tails stories.
Dean Nicholson was seeking distance from his job as a welder, he could no longer “do the 9-5 thing”.
He wanted to really see the world. So he set out for a three-month exhibition, alone, to travel parts of the world on his bike. He cycled from Scotland across Europe before making his way into Bosnia.
Dean was pedalling up a hill in Bosnia when he heard a little meow. He looked over his shoulder and he saw a kitten chasing him.
At first, he didn’t know what to do with the desperate kitten on the side of the road. He was already carrying too much. But the animal seemed intent on joining him.
“As soon as I got her to relax, that’s when I decided to bring her with me,” Nicholson said.
He plopped her in his front basket, but she wasn’t satisfied with that.
Instead climbed up onto Nicholson’s shoulder. From there, she kept watch and nuzzled him. Quickly becoming accustomed to the bumps and swerves of the road, she dozed off.
Nicholson found a vet in Montenegro, where he learned that she was about 7 weeks old and had no microchip. “So I was like, ‘I’ll just keep her,’”. He had a chip installed, and made sure she got the vaccinations that would allow her to accompany him across borders.
She was named Nala, after the lioness friend in his favourite film, “The Lion King.” The tiny animal, with eyes like jewels, wouldn’t leave his side.
He found a proper cat compartment — which even had a little viewing window and had a harness to keep her safe.
The two were inseparable, as Nala clung to Nicholson’s back when he was cycling or burrowed in his armpit when he stopped to pitch his tent at night. They shared meals at their deserted campsites, as he devoured pasta and fries and she ate cat food. He sipped coffee. She lapped water.
At the end of the year, Nicholson briefly put their journey on hold.
The rain and cold that had trailed them down the Albanian coast had left Nala with a chest infection. She was given antibiotics, and he posted up with her in a hostel for several weeks of recovery.
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⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ We moved to our new apartment today and even though it was only a 20 minute cycle across town, i could definately tell Ghost has put on a few kgs since I found him! ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Once we got settled in it was yet another day of rest for Ghost, his limp is almost gone which I'm so happy about. ❤ Tomorrow we are going to the vet with pablo (@bikecanine ) so all the pups are getting their vaccinations at the same time and are on the same schedule! 💉 • ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ • ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ • ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ • ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ • ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ #cat #catsofinstagram #nala #georgia #tbilisi #adoptdontshop #adventurebybike
By early January, things were looking up, “She’s fearless,” he said of the feline. They were ready to set off once again, with a more secure — and waterproof setup for Nala.
By the time he’s finished, Nicholson will have seen remote corners of the world. “I’ll also have seen this cat grow up, which is maybe even more incredible,” he said.