A Long Way Up…And Worth The Ride!

Let me first start off by saying I am a big fan of Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman‘s motorcycle travel series. The latest one is called: “Long Way Up“. This is a story of two men riding from South and Central America all of the way to Los Angeles on motorcycles…electric motorcycles!  You are invited to take a ride alongside them and partake in the adventure. The perfect antidote for me during this stay-at-home environment we are all facing.

The chemistry between these two is infectious. Rarely do you witness two people that clearly care for each other and enjoy each others company as much as these two gentlemen! To have even one friendship like this in one’s own life would truly be a gift.

Ewan & Charley convey a certain social & environmental enlightenment and responsibility that weaves its way throughout the trip. As they start the journey they have the option to go with the Harley Davidson gas version motorcycle or try something new with testing an electric prototype. Despite the obvious limitations like limited electric stations and limited mileage, they opted for the electric version. For any Harley Davidson die hard I’m sure this would be a big change – not hearing the rumble of the motor would be hard to get past, but you could tell that these guys were in there own way trying to spread a bigger message that change is important in order to preserve the carbon foot print of this beautiful planet. It’s clearly mentioned in the film numerous times: “It’s the future – electric!”. Even in one scene you see along the way that they come across a completely remote store that has a charger. When they asked the owner of it why he put it in – he said he wanted to be prepared.

Not all is rosy on their trip. Along their journey they witness the drastic deforestation of Ecuador due to cattle patching resulting in a devastating 98% reduction of it. We see the damage that mankind can do, but we also witness the simple truth that we can make a difference. We are introduced to Jerry; formerly a Wall Street executive, who is now part of a conservancy group committed to planting trees to help bring the rain forest back. Allowing nature to take it’s course we see the vegetation is now growing back. Ewan mentioned that if people cut back on their meat intake it would potentially decrease the need to cut down these forests for cattle. The forests play a vital role. According to the website MongoBay –Rainforests are often called the lungs of the planet for their role in absorbing carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, and increasing local humidity. Rainforests also stabilize climate, house incredible amounts of plants and wildlife, and produce nourishing rainfall all around the planet. 

The need to strap on one’s helmet and get going is an important theme. Being able to get out in the world and truly see the kindness of people and do our part for future generations to inherit a world that flourishes and is not torn a part by human greed and consumption. Seeing the beauty of Manchu Picchu through Ewan’s eyes was beautiful. This place holds a special connection for people for it seems to intoxicate them with a deep sense of spirituality.

This film evokes more of a humanitarian theme than just another pretty travel commentary. In my eyes, it was a piece on basic and much needed human kindness and friendship, the need for all of us to be responsible in order to preserve our mother earth, and the willingness to accept we have a problem and take the necessary steps for a better tomorrow.

I highly recommend checking out this show: Available on Apple TV

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Photo Credits: Feature photo & video: Apple TV+, montage photos: Apple TV+, CNN, Apple TV+, Apple TV+, rainforest: Destination Ecuador, Manchu Picchu: Escape

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