One of our 1st Contact forex brokers, Andrew McNair, is in India right now with three of his friends raising money for Cool Earth on the Rickshaw Run. We decided to check in with Andrew for news from the subcontinent.
First off, tell our readers what the Rickshaw Run is.
The Rickshaw Run is an event organised by the The Adventurists, in which riders ride auto rickshaws (tuk-tuks) along various winding routes across India. We were allowed to choose whichever route interested us; all we have to do is get to the finish line on 14 January.
How did you land up signing up for the Rickshaw Run?
We ended up deciding to do the Rickshaw Run over a few beers.
Give us an idea of the places you’ve already travelled through.
We started in Cochin in the southwest and spent the first night in a tiny town, the name escapes me. Since then, we’ve been to Bekal Fort, Om Beach, Palolem Beach and Vagator in Goa, Kolhapur, and we are now heading for Pune.
What has the trip been like so far?
Driving our rickshaw through the night was both terrifying and inspiring – the Indian roads are crazy. We’ve been to beach parties in Goa, ferried across a few rivers, had at least a dozen break downs, ran out of fuel and had some close calls with other road users. I’ve lost two pairs of flip flops, slept on the floor three times and been through a box of Imodium.
We’ve got off pretty lightly though. One team’s rickshaw caught on fire, another smashed into a truck and a few have flipped over.
What are you most excited about seeing on this trip?
At this point, I am most excited about reaching the finish line. We’re in it to win it.
It seems like this race really puts you through your paces, how has the team been getting along?
We’ve been lucky enough to be getting along quite well. We did have a bit of conflict in Goa. Mat and I had face and head massages and did some shopping while Warren had the stressful task of booking train tickets and servicing the rickshaw simultaneously. He was not happy, but we sorted it out and can’t wait to get to the finish line.
Riding for charity
The Rickshaw Run is not just about perilous tuk-tuk driving through one of the world’s most beautiful countries. The run is also a charity event. Over the years, the event has donated more than £2 million to various charities. Andrew and his merry band of rickshaw runners will be trying to raise a total of £1 000.
1st Contact will be donating to their cause and help them support both Cool Earth, which is an organisation that aims to save the rain forest, and the Come Together Association which is an organisation that helps children all over the world.