Marmande to Moissac



One more day of my loop down to the bottom of France and back up to the Black Forest and I will be half way round. That milestone will be reached just to the west of Toulouse. Much of the first day was as has already been said on cycle paths. The next eight were on the D roads of France. D roads cover a broad range of sins from single lane right up to dual carriage way – most of my ones were of the single track variety. Yesterday and much of the rest of the week will be on different cycle paths. The different transitions cause different challenges – especially if you have got used to one way of doing things. On the cycle paths there might be people walking, or running with headphones. They might not hear you coming. On the road, well there is the traffic. Although the drivers in France treat cyclists far better than they do in Britain. The only close pass here has been by a car with British plates. Of all the transitions on this journey I suspect the most difficult will be going back to work in August!

Transitions can also cause challenges for those with autism. In this context I am talking about moving from one stage in live to another, such as the moves from school to college and college to work. In the work place people with autism have the same protections as other disabilities under the Equality Act and Northern Ireland Disability Act. When working with someone who is on the autism spectrum it is worth remembering that for them to deliver their best work it may be helpful to manage them in a different way. For example, providing written instructions, breaking down large tasks in to smaller components. Being willing to provide feedback if someone is focussing on something that is of particular interest to them but perhaps does not facilitate the delivery of a goal. This may all sound like things people will do in their daily work anyway, however, you might need to do it a bit more if you are working with someone on the autism spectrum.

Finally, it is work remembering that autism is a spectrum disorder. Given this there will be a broad range of rolls that could be undertaken by those with the condition – and as well as this everyone is different. We should think carefully about how we interact with everyone and try to get the best out of these interactions. Just like on the bike, whether it is the cycle path or the road, you want to get from point A to point B in the most efficiently and enjoyable way possible!

Thanks for reading,


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Not the Tour - Day 11

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