Heather Ellis is an Australian author, journalist, public speaker and motorcycle road safety advocate who rode her Yamaha TT600 from south to north Africa, and from the UK to Vietnam via Central Asia from 1993 to 1997.
Heather Ellis is the author of Ubuntu: One Woman's Motorcycle Odyssey Across Africa. Her travel memoir details her epic journey over 15 months, through 19 countries riding 42,000 kilometres from south to north Africa during 1993 to 1994. It has been described as Ted Simon’s Jupiter’s Travels meets James Redfield’s The Celestine Prophecy with a touch of Robert Pirsig’s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. It is about a life-changing adventure into the soul of Africa where she finds ubuntu — a traditional Bantu word from South Africa meaning 'I am because we are', the universal bond that connects all of humanity as one. While her memoir is a journey filled with 'survival-against-the-odds' adventures, it is also a journey of awakening to the guiding hand of a greater force realised through the influence of chance encounters, coincidences and trust in her intuition.
'Ubuntu is an inspiring memoir about an extraordinary journey taken by an exceptional woman. Heather Ellis writes about her most daring adventures and deepest struggles with humour, heart, guts and grace. I was enthralled by every page.’ —Cheryl Strayed, author of Wild
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Ubuntu: One Woman's Motorcycle Odyssey Across Africa
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My Yamaha TT600 today. The same motorcycle I rode through Africa in 1993/94; used for motorcycle couriering in London ; and then rode through Central Asia during 1997. He waits patiently for our next adventure.
I now call Melbourne, Australia home and enjoy riding my Moto Guzzi V50 around the hills of the Yarra Ranges. That was until the dear old girl fell victim to a SMIDSY while I was stopped at a red traffic light (SMIDSY = Sorry Mate I Didn't See You). I'm in the process of rebuilding her.
Today, I ride a Triumph Thruxton 900cc. The 'Black Princess', she is a quick nimble thing on mountain roads and in city traffic.
The Ted Simon Foundation encourages those who adventure into the world to go the extra mile and transform their experiences into something of value for the world to share.