Thursday, April 19, 2007

Cycling from Istanbul to Greece, Bulgaria and back
Check out his website. Jean, from Montreal, has been walking around the world for 8 promote "Peace and non-violence for the children of the world". He has two more years to go.

Damned if I remember how to say hello in Turkish, Greek or Bulgarian! Howdy.
Mom didn't want to take Ramon to Alexandria or Istanbul for a hotelholiday and dad needed his endorphin fix, so I left Maria to deal withthe offspring, as is only right and just; someone's got to maintaintradition and teach them what a million years of obligation are allabout :) (That ought to get few replies!)
After a delayed flight and no sleep, I headed straight out of theIstanbul airport and 70 kms down the road, I ran into Jean Beliveaufrom Montreal who has been pushing a baby jogger (sans bambino) aroundthe world since 2000 and plans to finish in the year 2112! He walksabout 30km a day and just passed the 40,000km mark. I've beensubscribing to his quarterly email update for the last couple ofyears, but hadn't realized that I would be crossing paths with him!Check out to see his route or contribute to his charitykids fund.
Two days riding got me to the Greek border, where I pedaled upwardsinto the Evros mountains, amidst the continuous ringing of churchbells during the Easter weekend.
Two days later and I crossed into Bulgaria. More quiet roads andplenty of ghost towns, as the younger generation seemed to have fledto greener pastures upon Bulgaria's recent entry into the EU.
Three days through Bulgaria got me to the Black Sea, back into Turkey,down to the Bosphorus and back to Istanbul. Courteous drivers, coolearly spring weather, great wild camping and warm hospitality (freemeals and lodging) all helped dad to recharge his batteries. 1100kmsin 10 days and only 3 flats.
Upon return, it took Ramon a full minute of curious looks before hesmiled and recognized his dad! Now guess who's turn it is to do thenightly feedings! What was that bit about teaching obligation? :)
Check jpeg titles on photos for brief explanations.