Cycling to Albania

 Continuing with the bike as I can on the downhills as a flat-mounted scooter and dragging on the climbs, I get to a garage where you wonder if they have something to solve what the chain tool and guy fucks his tools quickly and within minutes I have it all ready and mounted on the bike, like new, Hvala Hvala, so glad to meet people … Just a dozen miles more and enVladimir etoy and the last town in Montenegro before crossing the border with Albania took the opportunity to do some shopping, and food cargadito dirjo me to the border with the uncertainty that will be open or closed by flooding. That sucks that you are police on the borders all with arrogance and a whopping chuleria saying that I have to show the roles of the bike, stupid things go, I warn that by little Km is where the bridge is flooded and I will not to get past, but no problem in moving to Albania. So leave behind another country to enter Albania, a little while after I start to see what they both warned me of the floods, and the houses that crowd the right side of the road are completely flooded with water to more than one meter up some cars that are sensed see only the roof is visible in my step I’m vruzando with military trucks and jeeps, red cross … but no water on the road, ask some villagers found at a gas station, preparing food plucking a bird, and tells me that the bike is not going to be able to pass but that some military truck you can put the bike and to the other side … Paso a bridge full of soldiers and rescue teams in sets leading to fears the worst. If you go for if it is flooded, do not step in here, and even within a few hours apparently did not get any army truck to go to the other side, well, no patient  ncia, soon came a guy with your particular bike from the other side, and makes a stop and we hit a good time chatting, while spending on military trucks but apparently these are not passing people, so seen are military in Kosovo, kosovo benne not tell me, good … NATO and then you’re going to do? to wait for other trucks arrive, come ride the bike here is that you took the other side, so perfect dismount everything and in front of the bike we put all the stuff, while people coming and going is that it’s like a meeting this right now, while the driver autbous poured water into the engine smoking another car comes opens the trunk and pulls out a wild boar killed after asking for help and they put it between a few as can in the trunk of the bus while the driver is still pouring water … later houses at either side of the street completely filled with water and people posing as may from side to side First pass behind autbous and let us go because I was not so, and tells me the worst is now ninth, ahh now we have to go over the bridge, and as we pass the water begins to enter the exhaust pipe, the bicycle and the trailer is buffeted from side to side as the slouch seeks to avoid the potholes that hide under the feet of water there, eventually stopping the bike just now if the guy pulls me and I rise on wings top of a stone, as he tries earring as may in the end I have to put the water and try to push between the two until it ceases to cover the exhaust pipe, and new starts, grazie mile, past the bridge discharge all I was barefoot and wear socks and shoes in the sun while I eat something and amount all. Of little use to the sun have put the shoes are soaked, and the day begins to come to an end with the cold starts to become more evident and wet my feet begin to freeze slowly. The landscape of this new country has changed from anything seen in any other country on this trip, and that soon they begin to listen to the call to prayer coming from the mosques, and is more than a country of Europe reminds me a lot to Morocco, dogs, donkeys, chickens, turkeys and everything else you can to see come together to entrebuscar some food for the garbage on any street, as people massed on either side of the road trying to go ahead with the sale of anything, while some are dragging more wheels to the next or other junk loaded with a fridge in tow, many stalls and other food ambulanetes selling fruit and many other things, while others direct the flock of turkeys one side of the road to another, I love to see these changes and feel I’m far from home, but not a great distance, at least if I’m far away culturally. So I get to Leze, where unemployment to find a phone and can call home, but no cabs go with cards, the cards can not find them and when I say I find the cabs do not work, well trying to find a booth I encounter some kids who want to make me rune photo photo photo Ok, the final one just left me his phone to call, and even offered me his house for the night but what he says is far in Manhattan, as if a little if and clear and I returned by bus with the bike hard, it ends up coming from another guy who says I can go to church and talk to the sisters that are sure to leave me a place to sleep, okay. Llegamso

and apparently the mass just begun, so until I finish anything, and type this is going before the end, well just so when I go to the nuns and I tell them I say talk to the bishop that he is the boss, so I go and tell the bishop but nothing at all so I stay a while talking to the nuns Peruvian father and end up calling Kiko the priest who is from Valencia, and I spend on the phone, I explain all the action, quiet, nothing happens if you find any site and I pay a hostel ok perfect … Hold on there in half an hour came to open the catedral’y to the mass. A tall guy with a beard on the wafer arrives and greets me go you’re a pilgrim who goes there not? good good pilgrim tampco go then you what you are is a bum! expected to open up and now I come … quiet no problem now accompany you to the hotel and not worry about running from my account and go pegate a shower and sleep … together on their mongauillos acomapañan me too, as we talked, and I said good morning, then I see you in church for the morning and tell me that such a perfect father Kiko many thanks … And such a warm shower to do so leaves me as new, also used to cut my hair and wash clothes but if not stay dry for tomorrow, and soon fall rendered in bed … Luxury that night and I needed God, I get up early and go to the cyber front to have if I can find someone in Petra to be that with my bike while I go to Spain a few days. And at 9.30 before I start Mass came to church and spent a while talking to the father Kiko on current living situation and overall Alabania who lived in the communist dictatorship, a country slightly larger than the Valencia and has more than 500,000 bunkers, just that gives a vivid idea of the situation 20 years ago that ended the dictatorship and it tells me the first decade was quite catastrophic worldwide under the mountains and began to build cities practically from scratch, which generated a wave of violence, asesintatos, kidnapping …. UNPOC now what is the work of the church is to help people more than anything social assistance, and erase the fear of society that has generated so much violence … changes, many changes the father tells me …. good if we get lucky just for you dad and thank you very much for everything. To not make the ugly I am at Mass, and until I join the queue to take the wafer, to what I said then goes to take the wafer and confessed that there will not echo your own? without losing any time the mood …. Now if you play back to the hotel and ride around and pa south, but back to the hotel is impossible to find me and all the streets are the same total in the end just returning to the cathedral hello encuntra the parent not jajaja anda hotel expected to go with you … While things have just pack it by giving the 12 almost, until I tell the lady who runs the hotel that the cost of a night, you pay Kiko father 2000leks (14 €), has no lowest price? I have no son, haggling a bit, leaving me just for 10 €, benne so I stay another day and aporvecho to finally finish the job of searching host for my bike and take me to finish the plane ticket from Athens to Barcelona , the lame final day 28 so I have time in case you never know … and also just getting my bike host for the day 23 in Petra, benne benne perfect friend. Lezhe a city where there is traffic chaos where everyone runs where you can and try to gain a foothold in the midst of this turmoil, doing what each can, cars, vans, buses, trucks pitch black smoke mixed with that is walking her cow, and with carrying a fridge in the van where the donkey is the driving blows of whip and cries of who manages it attempts to move in the chaos surrounding him. Changes Kiko’s father told me, and so I say what other people with whom they engage in conversation, friend building construction, houses, buildings, albania grows, while I with my camera trying to take a picture that reflects what my mind can see and intuit but there is no way to be quiet when no one is someone else telling you something … Now if it’s time to depart and leave behind these two days that I have seen so many new things, leave some things to learn other, empty the bag so that it can be refilled, take to later get … Uruguay Uruguay as friend? this is my new nationality if I stick Spain raised you, so also initiated conversations with even deeper simple newsstand or the woman who sells Spades amid tumultuous Lezhe entry, but that makes me feel closer to home and really know … Wind and windy side that pulls off the road like a leaf falling in autumn, until they know how or why after a few miles the wind changes direction and fly up to 25km / h on average 100km saegunda Durres step the most important city after Tirana and after following a few km along the coast begin to lose me in the mountains, already 16:30 and the darkness starts to gain advantage on a road that esstoy more than the previous local ecunetro settles quickly to my tent site. The next day I get to Berat, Internet stings and called my mother, shit when I hang up the phone and the guy tells me 850leks price (5 €) for just 2min, Queeeeeeeeeeee ??!!!!!!!!! delivery and mondo me bye lucas me you do not pay, just 10 seconds later crowd around my bike, all kids just out of college, begins to come on the market because of the front of the house next, you do not pay that you are staying with me, and you do not touch the bike, I get very bad host, get the kid to show me where was the phone and explained to him and scream after scream, and people more people, eventually gets his way and he paid but I’m just very bad ostia, just get out of the street and taking advantage of that and all the turmoil is scattered back to the guy and you loose a series of …. vendetta vendetta friend, hahaha the guy as if he heard rain. Well I better continue with my journey and forget to ask where is the road to tell me what you know best around and catch a 20km detour back there, the road from here is not right, I they say each other but I to mine, and nothing after 5km I have to dra reverse mierrr road this road have not seen in more good trialeras this “road” to high to start back rain, luckily before dark for the rain, I continue to the end of my strength, so take advantage of this fateful day, until I see a road track that deviates from the main pa and shot near some avocados are not that is exactly but if what that smell … luckily left in the bottom and the smell does not come here until they put up a tent and the wind direction changes, in order … Night with cold and fever, which took a couple of miles to stop at a gas station and some breakfast while taking a coffee and croissant I put the porn movie, hahaha these people are fatal, and at every stop is that I always do just chatting about anything withthe that there are, as I warm up my feet in that sort of range they have, and I stopped to buy some food and apples Gad that are good in my life that I have proven so few blocks, I the road until it ceases to be road becomes track, but how can this be a national? roads in The Gambia seem highways compared with this, potholes flooded by rain the previous day, a car that comes in front while another truck tries to advance and pita you have behind you, where the hell you put me if there is no I site is no longer or because I whistle, I finally got most the clutter and each beep sound my horn and I raise my hand while bellowing Myrdita Albania (good morning) and really take effect for at least the people I returned a smile and a greeting that will make me less hard then the passage through the national track and at the same time goes down goes up comes down mountains, over the big chainring all the time and the snow begins to appear before my eyes luckily that if only the distance on top of these colossal mountains just confused with the low clouds out there.

December 15, 2010

When All Else Fails …. (Ullcinj Montenegro, Day 68,

In little more than 50km I stand in the last country in the world, Montenegro entering this country labeled as recently as a decade after its independence from Yugoslavia. So at the border I get my first stamp in the passport
I go across the border to find with this unique pair hitchhike a Frenchman and a Japanese barely just met, and to possibly find me again later as we share destination and route, Turkey, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Turkmekistan …. previously and I found them I went out of Dubrovnik and now I find them already in Montenegro.
The landscape in Montenegro over the first km is impressive, in a moment I have to take a boat in order to save a huge bay that will save me more than 30km and the bay or fjord that is impressive as if it were one of the fjords Norway’s largest landscape tipioc with mountains on all sides, and the boat trip that I run into a strange gypsy Kosovar Albanians, happened to talk a while … We are just 5 minutes on the other side of the bay, and just 20km to Budva here but I just found a site before you arrive in the middle of a field between us bush, rain and an hour ago was present, continue to timid way overnight.
After the first km in the morning can not stop going up and down and noticed that the rear wheel is not very fine, the punctured half so I stop, but I have no camera repaired so as the sting is not very great inchar back and replace it, and a few miles Puffffff … in less than a second wheel runs out of air that has passed coooño, stop and see that I have a cracked wheel, go I think when you do not ride mountain above it, and now what? … repair the other camera that I have because I stop right next to a stall to clean cars and there is a cube where I used to repair the cameras, so the amount of these and let it swell medium to at least go though is walking to the next town and pray that there is a bike shop, nothing at all until I reach 5km Petrovac but nothing indicates to me that there is a workshop a couple of miles on the road and try there, with go to bed bike came, but they have nothing, and I say to Bar I will not find anything as far as that Bar? 20km good attempt to hitchhike but no way, so now on my way continuous midday walk to Bar until it gets dark and encontrarr a site to purchase the store and spend the night. What a night I expected, start a wind shakes the tent like a plastic bag, and soon begin high rain thunder, lightning and thunder it count to 12 rays in less than a minute … and every time you hear thunder closer, I no longer pray or to holy … finally just going after a few hours, but the wind continued all night anything that makes barely able to sleep all night.
And so the wind the next day, and I dragged the bike holding on to the ups and downs, 12km and I am in Bar where I suggest a bike shop I go straight there, and finally change it wheel and the way I buy another but just in case so I would not happen again, the guy in the shop seeing as I have the bike will start to take a little oil helps me to mount the wheel and as I see it as motivated I say that I change the sprockets (to say anything) the guy just committed to help the worst leaving has no fucking idea mechanics, just me saying that change is screwed (not without reason that it has more than 23000km) and tells me he has one for 10 € ok come put it, while I go buy some food, mounts as you can and jump to try changes in pairs, this does not work ehhh, takes the bike to his workshop to look better or that tells me while I’m out in the shop playing a little guitar, and a kind lady trrae me a piece of patty sandwich warm as a warm, thanks (you think I was asking for money) … Soon comes the guy with the same change that I had set, and good taste it seems to go better, but the guy asked me € 20 more, I changed the cable, the case hardly want to argue and I give, just give me a kit for punctures, one light and a reflective brakes to the wheels, and so almost 15:30 and I are already starting to get dark so I boot Ullcinj address, which is just 25km from the border with Albania But on top do not know if I’ll be able to cross the border since Monday morning a disinterested driver to warn that if unemployment taxes to Albania Ullcinj the border was closed by the flooding of the river due to rainfall has had during last week. I think with all the action I’ve had and seeing that it has not rained much these days may have lowered the level for tomorrow … but should go back and go backwards Posgorica and cross the border on the inside which is 250km but …
Just start the first ramp and see what he has done this type of store is a waste and I start popping the changes, and you begin to put me in bad ostia, find a place to put the store just before a perfect cliff with sea views and the clear sky make me look to spend a quiet night. Well, nothing, spend an hour and the wind starts to whip the store with more force than yesterday if possible, even beginning to think I’m going to fly off into the ravine that is barely 5 meters, between this and do not stop thinking it over to how I was able to cheat in that way the guy in the shop, spent one night divine, such as bad luck … Luckily as I can spend the night without sleep so if you just …
In the morning I get to leave something better change, but also makes a noise that I do not like, I go upstairs and Crrrrrack under mierrrr …. the chain from me just in the midst of the most absolutely nothing about 15km from the border with Albania, well I have a chain tool and spare parts needed, I get to fix it until it pisses me off the chain tool and the screw goes, so to again push the bike until I get to ask someone tells me that until we get to Vladimir nothing there about 8km but try in a shop there a couple of miles

Adriatica Pearl (Day 65, 3496km)

Spanish to English translation

So Lord Byron classify the city of Dubrovnik, situated between mountains on the coast of the Adriatic, with part of the walled old town of Dubrovnik, with its streets and monuments amarmoladas hitoricos rather people this city takes on a special charm.
Came directly to the youth hostel that although it is outside the old town is not far behind, but later it’ll host for the next two days right here. I go a while to discover the charm that both say they have Dubrovnik and the truth that they were right, but also it is much smaller than I thought, let in a few hours and you’ve made a few turns to what comes being the old town. The next day left with Alexander (cs), who looks forward to that you get your bike and start to prepare well for what will be his first bike ride around the area of the former Serbia. At night stay with some friends and her sister Kassandra that also lives in the same apartment.
The next day take the opportunity to walk around the mountain that is behind so Dubrovnik and see the view from the top, in the afternoon a little relax, and watch for the return flight to Spain which I think eventually catch a flight from Athens the question is how do I get there the day 20, since there are 1200 km and I just think 13 days are part of a bicycle and another by hitchhiking, and will look good nose.
And before the adjournment of Kassandra and her brother and I leave that if I am late to start the day ….
December 8, 2010

Snow, frozen, wet, rain (Knin, Dia 57, 3246km)

I arrive to the youth hostel and it is close, no just a moment one mobile phone in the door, free call, call me please, and the phone number behind there… The first time that I saw that this is the feeling that you are in small town where all the people nows each other.

In few minutes came the porperty of the hostel and he just leaveme the keys and explainme how it works allÇ; is not so much people now this is no best moment to travel (it is one of the phrases that most I listen)…

After to install and check everything in the room, for sure I need all the small room just for me and all my things is not a problem because I dont share with nobody…

I cant remember how I start to “talk” with this person but finnally we share a conversation with the google translator, he told about his son he was playing a basketball tournament in Barcelona, and know he want to change the team; it is the typical person that are very orgulloso about his family, his city, his country, he just want to saw me on internet photos about Croatia and some stuuffs; -I am working now but in some minutes I will finnish we can go to eat calamares, – for sure it will be a pleasure.

He didnt accept my money so he pay the dinner, while he start to talk with the chamber about I dont know but the conversation is going up, up, just I understand AlQaeda, so after some minutes I decide to leave the restaurant and go to the hostel… After one or two hours I meet him another time and start to talk again, and he begin to told me that he was in the war in Bosnia Killing musulmans I get impressioned how he told me that, he is so frozen and he is talking about killing people, I dont know what to say, also after he show a photo on internet is him with their war friends with the guns and with one nazi flag, other photo one destryed mezquita for him with canons, he start tatatata, pum pum pum, hi hitler! but very tranquility I am very impression I said to him that is not good, me comunist, but he doesnt told me anything, Ok we dont understand each other so is better to leave the conversation, but anything bads happends…

So go to sleep and will see tomorrow what I will do

I wake up and I go around the town buy something, and see how is the village. Just in some minutes start to snow, nice, so I decided that today I will be here for one night more… It will not stop in all the day the snow; so I profit the market that is in the center and go to buy some hat for the winter, It was really funny talk with the sellers, is dobre (good) the hat yeah yeah dobre dobre, jajajaj and all people start to laugh ok me too when I saw my face with the hat…

Just almost the day I am in the hostel just, I went to take some photos and to have the delicious typical dessert of Samobor… After in the hostel I meet the strange man of yesterday and we say good bye.

The car machines began yesterday to take out the snow of the roads, so today is Okay to start to ride again, until snow other time. The day is perfect to cicle, is cold but with sun is very nice;  and see how can it changes the landscape it is wonderful, the road start to go up up up, but with out traffic, until I arrive to Karlovac (big town, 45km). The toursist office is closed today so just follow the same road to the south and try to dont feel the -5ºC  at night. So I take a small road after 80km and I found a “perfect” place to put the tent, completly full of snow around and everywhere it is magical place, different of all the days before; I make  a soup with the snow, and in some minutes I am sleeping, like at 19:00 I dont why but I feel very tired… And I get up  at 08:00 more than 12 hours sleeping thats great, and I didnt feel so much cold, but it was, the half beer that I leave yesterday night is completly frozen outside like the rest of the things, the seat of my bike is frozen also…

Following the same road that I leave yesterday I start the day and in some minutes it start to snow, and it doesn’t stops, my foots are getting frozen fucking frozen, my guitar and my trailer behind me is just snow almost 30cm of snow up on my guitar… I cant continuous like this is impossible also the road you dont see anything, the cars cant go so fast for the ice and I must be pray to dont go down… so after 25 (2hours) I meet a restaurant-hostel with internet and I decide to be here until stop the snow but, it doesnt stop so I pass the night here and tomorrow will see… All the day snowing, until night it finnish

You can take everything you want and how many you want for breakfast!! are you sure? heheh yes, ok I finnish full full full of food, so in the rest of the day I didint need to eat until dinner (it was enough with omelette of potatoes and 3eggs with bacon, milk, muesly) … Start to ride, cold but still no snowing. I arrive to Plitvicka Jezera (national parks with wonderfull lakes), and they advertist me If you want to be alive take the bus to go to Zadar, the weather for tomorrow and past tomorrow it will be worst that the last days, but I know how I am and I ignore that, so I follow the same road; go to small road and look for a place to put the tent. The place is like nothing just snow, and far away some mountains, it takes to me the remember what I want to see if finnally I arrive to Mongolia (one of my dreams since some year before), just nothing that is what I want to see. Clean the place to put the tent and ready, some dinner, read, espacio en blanco, and sleep.

It is wonderful when you have travelling for “long time” (not so long, yet) and almost every day you sleep in different places, and its difficult to remember when you get up where you put the tent the day before , this moment is Magic just open the door, and……. see that…. no words is like a new day in a new place all completly for you, to enjoy, to learn, to share… definitly to live.

Same road, and in some minutes start to rain, snow stop, start again stop; I must to go fast as I can to the next town and try to follow some information maybe it will be here some shelteres to enjoy the nature… but nothing I didnt find anything, just some coffees in Garcanc while I talk with the chamber in RUstic Caffee where he make a suggestion take the bus to Zadar it will  be the best option go to the coast by bus, if I was you I will do it; ok so what I do? dont go to the coast, and dont take the bus, follow the same road that now goes to the south-est to arrive to knin next big town is about 60km, I start to go up in very long port, where when I start it was rainning, and in hundred metters going up it changes to snow, I feel very tired, going up, start to be smog also, so cold, smog, snow, and wet inside, so I decided to stop and try hitch hiking, but not so many cars also, and just the cars that pass me sawme like a strange person in the middles of the snow with a big bike… So after 30min it doesnt works so comeon take the bike ang go up!!! After some Km going up, go little bit down and flat until I saw the sgnal welcome to Zadar region, and from here the snow in the road start to disappear just 5km more and the snow it doesnt exits thats take me more power, anyway my foots are completly wet and cold very cold, and watching long I start to see a long way going down, but long long, and wonderfull around the mountain crossing some valleys by some bridges, also I have the wind helpping me and the road it doesnt go so much down but with the wind I cycle faster than 50km all the time, just in the bridges where the wind get crazy I need to take the bike very strong to dont follen down, maybe it was 15km like this, Where I was before to take this long way going down? Going down also I feel that I start to dont feel good, I didnt eat so much and I don want to stop until I arrive to Knin it will be 20km, completly wet inside, feeling really bad, and cold it start to go little bit up, and this 20km was one of the most longest km that I made never…

I arrive finnally to Knin feeling very bad, after sometime I found the hostel…

Escaping from the cold weather I found a warm people (52Days,2968Km)

So I get up In Wien, with the fix idea to go to the south, just packing all the things and is 8:30 time to go.

Go out of the city is worst than enter, all the time pass in my head go to Danub is easy to find the way, yes no yes no comeon yes go to Danub just in this moment I ask somebody and I am in the wrong way, so in the good way to take the E9, casuality? nye so just some hundreds meters from there the first sign of E9, ok so go to the south. Go out of the city take me 2 hours, so I decide to spend some hours during the night cycling until 20:00, the feeling during the first moment is dangerous but when I find the cicleroute it starts to be a magical moment  cycling at night no noise, dont see anything, just the light of the full moon its Ok, to cross some paths into the forest, but after that I lost the signals, I find, I lost, I find, I lost….is abut 20:00 and I am on the road with very poor lights and the road start to go up, I dont have so much food and not so much water and I start to get dizzy, so stop in any place put the tent and tomorrow will be other day… finnally 125Km is not so bad

Yeah other day that I start very early about 07:20 I am cycling, with out water,thinking that will be some shop near, but… road continuous going up and up and up, I cant belive, 9km (1000m a.s.l.)no shops no nothing just up up, and impossible to see nothing is completly cover by smog, I start to get dizzy another time but I need to arrive, so I arrive to the next village (Monirkirchen) with powerless, I go to buy something and eat. I take some information in tourist office about the cicleroute that now takes the name of R12 until the frontier with Slovenia.

First meters after Monirkirchen continuous going up, butnow in better conditions I can enjoy that, finnally I founded again the route R12 and it starts to go down, up, down, up… nice road with out cars, so Tryiing to proof all the hours that I can I made 135km until 19:30 when I start to get lost just some Km before the bordier with Slovenia, so I decide to take a small road and put the tent everywhere ohhh nice bus station so put down there, it was not good idea just when I start to sleep HALLO HALLO and with lights ohhh shit the police, I completly nude in the sleeping bag they dont speak english and I dont speak german, you need to go out forbidden stay here, yeah I know but, night, cold, lost, bike, no money, they take me my passport and start to writte something, ok I put my clothes and I go out and dont understand what they want that I do they just give me my Id card and say chursss (bye), Ok what I do now, I wait maybe they come in few minutes to see what I am doing, no nobody comes, so I decide to continuo sleeping in the tent, and it didnt was more problems, but still I dont know if they will send me a bild… I hope that they saw my birthday and they will think ohh poor guy yesterday his birthday and he is here… anyway will see

With all this problem I cant sleep very good so at 06:00 I start to pack all the things and at 6.30 I start to ride come back to Jessendorf from where I get lost, is very smog and it will be dangerous to take main road so I take small one directly to themountains and in 30Km I cross the border with Slovenia nobody there.  The day is very nice with sun cold but sun maybe 5C but I need to go fast I can so start to be wet and I take my Tshirt, for some hours I am going really fast, and then I am in the border with Croatia, I dont Know if go there or continuous in Slovenia I feel thats the contry is very friendly just the people that I ask or in supermarket tourist office all of them were very nice, I get very sorpraise; but finnally I decided to cross the border to Croatia, its the first border that they take me the passport and ask where I am going, to me askme where I am going if I dont know how I am going to tell you Ok the first city that comes to my mind Dubrovnik, I dont where is exactly, Dubrovnik? he show with sorpraise face, ok go but very edge people arrogant, I start to think that it was not good idea to croos the border…

But this just stay in my head for some minutes after that I can prove that the people is really friendly, simpathic, generous… I the first town (Otok Virje)  that I cross in Croatia I stop to the tourist office and they giveme a perfect map for the region with all the shelters in the mountains. So decide to look for one of this shelters I start to ride in coratia directly to the mountains, after ask some local people and with some “luck” I find it, it is vagon of a old train it is close but is good place to put my tent down of the roof, with some tables and chairs, the place is very cozy, still not so cold…. I think that leave the cold placesback me, definetly I went more fast that I was thinking today totally it was 130km, so from here I can relax more and enjoy Croattia.

Ok I need first of all find a town where I can change some money, buy some food and buy a small bottle of gas, yesterday it was finnish while I was cooking a soup with rice, so Finnally no soup…

I start the day following the same mountain road going inside the mountains and enjoy that, but just with three gears in my bike is difficult to go up, anyway I enjoy this beautiful sunny cold day,sometimes with this atmosphere that takes the smog, just enjoy with all good or bad. I feel very good going up, down all is wonderful, the people are nice they dont worry to ask me, just ith the hands we can comunicate, finnally I arrive to Ivanec where I change my old Chezk Krones and some Euros but changing the Krones they give like more than the double still I dont Understand (I give for them 700CZK =28 €=209HRK and they give me 576HRK = 1922CZK = 77€) so at the end I give like 28€ and they give me 77€, they are very friendly and generous defintly…while I change the money some people outside takes photos of my bike and we try to speak little bit. I buy all the stuff that I need and I go to find a village with tourist office maybe they have a map for shelters I find it in Marija Bistrica, they give a map with some information about shelters it is around Donja Podgora,    little bit difficult to find specially when is getting dark and the “road” go up up, and my gears arent enough to to ride this, anyway finnally I found it, what I was thinking was the shelter but it was the hunters home, but no problem, I prepare some fire, and the mysticism of the place start to feel in me, very cold but with the fire, beer, and watching the stars the atmosphere is very warm, just think in nothing and feel free in the mountains, also start to appear the full moon with a wonderful orange colour, ohh thats perfect

Not so much cold during the night but when I start to cycling and going down mama mia, trtrtrtr, all the plants aroun the road are completly frozen, beautiful to see how can changes the landscape all completly white, small rivers going down, and the smell of the smoke from the chimneys of houses, croosing small villages, watching people working in the field, Dobre dutch (good morning)  you can think that is stupid but when you are inside there for me is wonderfull to be part of this landscape; finish to go down now I prefer to go up and get warm, still is a very sunny day, so to take more warm I take a coffee with whisky, thats good… Meeec Meeec the men of bus that I was talking before.

Now I am so near to Zagreb the capital of Croacia, but I dont want to visit, another time a big city still not long time from Wien, and enter visit go out it will take more time that I have, so I go directly to Zapresic, where I meet a Ivana in the tourist office, very friendly she invite to spend all the time that I want and she offerme a cup of coffe also she make a suggestion to go to eat a sendvich in the market, mmm delicious I just went to look for some maps and finnally I spend more than 2 hours just talking, she writte some words in Croatian and she warns me about the dangers in Croatia, some people die in the mountains for the cold, thats good to know, and becarefull with the people I really dont feel that but every where can happends bad things.

So I take my bike another time to go to Samobor is just about 8Km but I need to take a ferry to croos the sava river but still I didnt arrive to Skela I meet with Eduard just asking how to go there, you want a cup of coffee yeah for sure why not, he inviteme to enter in the hairdress and we share a conversation he was travelling around the world by boat, during lot of years with her wife, still they love travel thats the best you can do to learn about the life… thats true, he offerme a homemade cheesse and I dont know whats was the other thing something fat but good. See you in next life, he told me ,for sure. I didnt take the bike that it cames her wife and she invitemeto enter another time in hairdress, she told you must beneed to writte a book my soon is travelling every year similar like you around the world, and every year he writte a book, she give the contact for him also he is colaborating with national geography, ( I was thinking that before but if I found somebody and tell me casuality?) finnally we made a photo all together imaging, typical hairdress full of women they dont stop to laughing, Ok now is time to go if not will be night I didnt will arrive anywhere…

I take the boat and just 5 Km is Samobor small town where i decide to pass the night in youth hostel

28th in Classical Wien (46days, 2426Km)

Enter in a big city its means that you must be take in advance patient a kow that it will take more time and distance that you planned before.

I arrive to the central library where somebody pay me the entrance for that, and I contact Paul of Cs he is the cousin of Sarah the girl that I host when she ended her bicycle trip from Italy to Barcelona. After to take a big coffee with Paul and have a nice conversation, and more if he is a passioned for adventures sports, sure that we can take a good conversation. We went to his home by bike together, and I meet there his friendly flatmates. We four together take a spanish dinner “tortilla de patatas, champinyones, cebolla….” and some stuff… delicious 🙂 After that my body needs to sleep so normally at 20:00 Im sleeping so this is the worst part my body cango more than 23:00. And next day I get up at 06:00, I profit the day to go to take some information in the tourist office, almost for  the classical concerts, opera…  andcome back to Paul home to make something for lunch.

So at afternoon I am going to see the Ballet to staat oper, it will be cheap if you take a stand up place so just for 3€ you can see this amaying Ballet with the orchestal music, I really enjoy that feeling every note in my mind like going to the heaven with the music, impossible to describe that with words… also in the staat oper I meet one guy he is from South Africa and he is guide tour, he put in my mind the idea to travel to Africa will see…

After the concert just come back to Paul home, and in the way Paaako!!?? einggg, just there is Sarah amazing the world is so small, she was recording something with the camera and I just appear in her camera, heheh, so we will meet tomorrow…

Another night impossible to do anything just my body feels that I need to sleep, and I cant continuos watching the film with Paul.

Next day I get up later than yesterday at 08:00 and Paul needs to go out for somedays, he didnt have a lot of time because he needed to study for exams but anyway I feel very friendly, and confortable time.. hope to see again somewhere…

In afternoon I decided to go to the staat oper this time to see the classcial function  “Rigoletto” of G. Verdi but this I need to go early because is just Friday and it is completly full of people. Very nice and exciting. I meet before the concert a guy (football player in national team pre professional, but just hurt) from Croatia  he talk me about how nice is the country and I start to think that maybe it will be better to change my plans for the nexts days, will see…

Outside of oper I meet with Sarah and other friends impossible to remember the names, some beers and some shots mixed all together, we finish taking the decoration of a Christmas tree, perfect to decorate my bike. We continuos in other pub and 20 of Nov, my birthday the first year that I am outside from home, but very happy…

So the next day after the “party” I decide to spend one day more in Wien and relax, still I dont decide where I will go tomorrow if take Danub or go directly to the South to finish in Croatia with the cicle route eurovelo9, one thing is true the cold definetly is coming in 3 or 4 days just check the weather for next days it says -13, so I must be need to go fast I can.

We meet to take lunch in a very nice Indian restaurant just go there eat all that you want and pay what you want, after that I decide to come back to home and dont go to a concert of music classic I prefer to relax and think what I am going to do tomorrow, in the long waytocome back where I get lost, I meet with the police, they put the lights to take me, I didnt listened because I was with the music, it supose that you cant go on the sidewalk its forbidden you need to go on the road, the passport come on, I didnt know I am coming cycling from Norway and it was not any problem you must be need to go to the police and now the rules, yeahfor sure I will go in every country just to ask what are the laws about the bike, hahaha 🙂 it can be supose a bild for 150€, with this bike you cant cycle here youmust be need to go walking ok I will go walking to the next country 🙂 ….

Finnally I decided to go directly to the south taking Eurovelo9 just because Paul tald me that is more nice and the guy that meet in Oper, so I think casuality I dont think that…

Green way Praha-Viena (43days, 2426km)

The worst part of that is the first to go out of Praha, so for that I decide the best way is take the river just to go out and after will be easy to go and follow the greenway. Very nice to take the way around the river you can see somethings like “shoechrist”.

The first roads going up! I didn’t remember that.  Trying to ask somebody I meet Antonio other cycletourist, he dont speaks english but he try to tell me that his house is open for me if want to pass the night there, so he said come with me, ok, we go to his home and his son that is living in front comes just to make a translator, thank you much but still is light and I want to proof the day, dont worry but before you must be need to see that… my bike museum, ohlalalala… he is a very freak bike, I never saw lot of bikes together; also he comes with me to showme the way to take the greenway.

Now after I found some marihuan in the way the green way is moooore green. One time I am in the corect direction the landscape is amazing, some mountains not very high but still mountains crossing forest, smalle rivers….. incredible and just time to find a place to pass the night it cant be better, i found some place in the forest near small river, fantastic, so wild camping and wild shower in the river, but is fucking cold so fast shower.

The weather changes  and now I am enjoying the sun also I can go without shirt and I miss my short trousers. It will be the last days of hot just I check the weather in internet, and it says somethings like min. -8º in Budapest or -6º in Belgrado where I want to arrive… anyway I enjojy now will see after…

Next days I continuos following the route, and the landscapes for moments is getting very beautiful specially the NationalPark Thayatalund Podyji, it was more than 30km the most beautifulls in all the way, where I put the tent for sure, around there also are some grounds for wine, jewish cementeries, and bunkers that they built for WWII but they didn’t use finnally. So I follow the route until Hevlin just in the border with Austria, to go little bit fast, just 40km and I continuos following the greenway now also in the same route that the Eurovelo 9 (you can download here more information about that).

And finnally I arrive to Vienna after enjoying six days on the bike, and the wild camping, and meeting nice people. My view of Czeck Republik changed to better, just somethings bad at the begining thats all.

I recomend us!!!

Somedays in Praha (38days, 1945km)

So I decide to stay for one day in Praga before I am going to move the next day to the house of Jan from Cs, he is living outside of Praga just around the city.

After to leave all the things in the hostel (travellers hostel), and take a shower, I meet with one boy, that he is gay and he didnt stop to try to…. yes that, so I decided to stop and don eat more bananas in front of him, and just he is in the bed behind me. So I go outside just to buy something and take some photos, definetly I dont like the big cities, they are taking proof always for the tourist…

I decide finnally to change the bed to sleep, it will be better absolutly. Next day I get up and I take a very loooong breakfast in the hostel, just before I go outside of the city I meet with Claude another cicletourist veeeery crazy but very funny he is 63 years old but is like he is just 18, talking about his “girlfriend”, about his trip, he went outside from belgium like 7 months and went to NordKapp and after to the south in Slovakia, and now comming back to France, HAVE A GOOD LUCK CLAUDE.

Impoooosible to find the route to arrive to Jans house all around city is highways or trails for the train so I decided finnally come back to the city. I spent some time changing something on the bike, some beers and sleep… Next day I decided to stay also in Praga just to relax, breakfast and go around in the city, while somebody arrive in the hostel ” I just lost my flight from Bcn to Bangkok”, fucking traffic in Barcelona…

Planes changes finnally I found some information about a cycle route from Praha to Vienna is a greeway about 470km so it will be better that… Before I wanted to go first to Brno and after Vienna…

So next day early, breaaaaakfast and faaaast

The first steps in Czeck Republic (36days, 1945km)

How to say? I dont like…. perfect!

Maybe is that I was very confortable in Germany, Denmark, Norway, before in France, but here in Czeck Republic I’m not feel good, the people see you like a shit, and nobody say hi, no smile, the drivers dont respect you, the route that I was following almost the time in the road or bad very bad paths conditions. It looks very poor in compar to Germany and smell a contamination, It remember to me little bit a morroco but not the people in morroco are more friendly, anyway….

So the first steps was cold very cold, to make the dinner it will take time just to cook some pasta… I put the tent in some minutes sleep in front of the river but a lot of noise for the traffic of cars… I get up at 06:00 and finnally I arrive to Praha and I look for the youth hostel (travellers stop, 260Kr, 11€ breakfast incl.).