Riding to the Iranian border was quite unpleasant – wet and cold but, of course, we naively hoped that it will all change after crossing – we will enter the hotness of Iranian deserts and will throw off all our warm clothes. Iran – the Middle East – always seemed connected with the Sun (always shining on TV), vast desert-ish lands and camel caravans crossing them. Besides, it is the beginning of the New Year – one day before our entering the year 1394 had started in this country. According to Persian calendar, the new year starts on the day of spring equinox, and usually the weather is pleasant in these days.
I woke up on 14th November, not having a clue where I was. This was definitely not a tent, since then I would be squeezed between Dainis and Ivars. I had so much free space around me, so we were definitely not Couchsurfing or staying in anyone’s house, there was ceiling… which meant we had not slept under the starry sky. So where..? After these and some more thoughts had run through my head in a split second, it all came back to me, we were in Yalta, Crimea (Ялта, Крим) and had just spent the night in a furniture shop. The uncommon spot probably did it, since it does not happen very often to me and thus it has definitely stayed in my memory.
“Goodbye, the Land of Wine!” we shouted out loud, it was 16th October – the day we left Chisinau and Moldova. Of course, if you have read any of our previous posts involving leaving cities, you’ll already know that it was definitely not an early morning activity.
By the time we got organised and said farewells to our new friends, it was already early afternoon and we decided to say goodbye to the city itself by having a meal in a simple Moldovan diner “Strelka” using our last Moldovan money – leu (MDL). Suppose, we got a little over-excited with our order, choosing 3 courses each – we definitely got a bit over our heads, particularly because we intended to cycle straight after the meal. This resulted in not having enough of the right cash in our pockets (we were around 1€ short). We contemplated of going to a currency exchange place to get some more money, but then again, getting more leu was something we would not need anymore, since we planned to cycle to the border of Transnistria that afternoon and back in Ukraine after that. Thankfully, the women at the counter accepted some of our Ukrainian hryvnias (UAH) instead, this proved to us once more – there are good, understanding and kind people everywhere. Continue reading
How do people do it? They write a story about a story about an adventure.
Where do people start? They choose the words that form a picture that describes the adventure.
When do people describe it? They stare in the screen to write down the past and miss out on the present.
Where do people find it? They search around to see it right in front of them.
How do people travel? They pack their bags to leave their home to take it with them.
Where do people travel? They go in circles, they go there and back again.
What is the destination? Destination is the journey and we have finally arrived.
“So I’m lying in my mini-bed in Kiev, its 3:36 a.m. and I’m trying to write my blog entry… The boys are long asleep and I suppose I’m left with this silence around me where all I can hear is them sleeping and the keys of the board. And all I’m really excited about is that not once during these three weeks have I heard them snore! Yet… but all together, as you may understand, I’m generally quite excited about other things too. So this is my writing mode on now, I suppose, so I better go and write something normal too… thanks, good night!! x”
A caption of my letter to a friend. After some serious staring in the laptop screen it is now 4:40 a.m.
Riga-Minsk – 655km travelled. Distance from home – 400km.
Minsk was the first stop of our journey. So, what’s it like in the ‘last dictatorship in Europe’? The first adventure we had on the early morning of September 16th 2014 was packing our bags. One can argue that all self-confident travellers pack before the trip but are those packed bags really the ones that make you ready for an adventure? Continue reading