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Archive for June, 2012

Videos From Rest Day in Bulgaria

We took Saturday off in Rousse, Bulgaria. Our hotel was located on a massive square full of people strutting their Saturday finest and other assorted cultural activities.

This clip shows us walking up to what turned out be Bulgarian folk dancing:

Bulgarian Folk Dancing on Public Square

This one is of a young Gypsy boy that came up to our table at dinner:

Gypsy Youth Entertainment

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Black Sea Bike 2012 is in the Books

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Lots to say about our final 145km into Constanta today but for now we just want to let our friends and loved ones know we made it here safely but quite tired.

It was a great help and unbelievable coincidence that Ray’s Romanian friend and colleague Felix was here in Constanta to help us get settled this evening.

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Paul Gets Stung (Again) Near His Eye

Day 12 of riding is in the books. Very remote. Nice road. Little traffic. Bike computer thermometer hovered around 40C most of the day, so it was hot. We are over 1,450km now, and it looks like we need to ride about 150km to reach Constanta tomorrow. By the way we are staying in a five-star hotel in Silistra, Bulgaria tonight. Will enter back into Romania early in the morning. Dinner consisted of two large pizzas loaded, outrageously large plate full of olives, salad, potatoes, … You get the idea.

Now to the real news. A very large and violent bee flew in between Paul’s glasses and face. Unfortunately, this happened while a racing 18-wheeler was passing nearby. The bee tried to exit through the spot between Paul’s eyes by stinging his way out. Paul shouted several words very loudly, similar words to Ray’s recent shouting. Paul was able to get the bee out from between his sunglasses and face, but the venom injecting bugger wouldn’t pull his ripchord to leave Paul’s hand, so Paul had to pull it for him. God that hurt! Paul has a small welt, you know where by now but I will say it anyway since I love typing with one finger, between his eyes. I hope Paul avoids a hattrick …

The adventure continues …

Bikes for Sale

If you are reading this post. If you are in Constanta, Romania. If you need a bike. If you have some spare cash. Consider that in about two days from now, we will be in your city. There we most likely will sell our two bikes. These bikes have performed very well. The bikes will only have been ridden for two weeks, 1,600km or about 1,000 miles. We think that you would enjoy these machines. So, dear reader, please consider purchasing these machines which we have actually grow quite fond of …

Ray Uses (Another) One of His Lives

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Picture this:

We had been riding for about 130km … sunny, hot, straight ahead. The road was decorated with a go-zillon potholes. Yeah, imagine an extremely long (100km) and wide (5m) piece of Swiss cheese. Paul was leading us out slaloming along to avoid the deepest of the depressions. I was following about 5-7 meters back rather than my usual 5-7 centimeters. This way I could swerve to avoid the holes as needed. Regularly, I would glance back to see if any cars were coming up from behind on the narrow road, but usually there were not any.

This time I glanced back and saw three or four cars coming on at high speeds. In front I saw a couple more cars coming at high speeds. Paul rode steadily about 7 meters ahead. “Cars back,” I shouted. We hugged the side of the road. Then I looked over my shoulder. F$%#. There was a fast car fishtailing about 25 meters behind me and about to plow into me sideways at high speed. To the unfriendly sound of screeching tires, I made the decision to get the f%$# out of Dodge. I turned to my right as hard as I could, rear tire sliding violently, going off the road, braced for impact, and saw the car pass by … I ended up behind a small bush. Then took another breath. Tires screeched and several other cars came to abrupt halts.

Meanwhile, Paul looked back horrified and thought his best friend had just been crushed under a car for he could not see any sign of me … the said bush hid my from his view. I emerged. He sighed a huge sigh of relief, a look of exceptional concern, and asked if I was okay. We took this picture at the spot and shared a moment of silence … then we proceeded to finish off the day.

After a long wait at the border for our passports to be returned, we entered Bulgaria after crossing a very narrow bridge near Rousse, Bulgaria. There a young boy on a bike served as our escort through the city, and he rode with us to a nice hotel on the city’s main square. We had dinner and drinks.

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for another day. The adventure continues …

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National Children’s Day in Romania

We were planning a big day on June 1 … our biggest so far. To reach our goal, we got our earliest start … which was about 7:30am. Not really early, but hey, …

We have begun to see occasional Gypsy groups along the road traveling in their wagons which seem to come directly out of a fairy tale. Apparently, these fairy tale characters don’t like having their picture taken. You can see below how the second wagon breaks formation and attempts to run down this unauthorized photographer.

Along the way, we stopped for lunch when we came across a large festival in a small town. We were sitting on a bench eating our usual lunch fare, when Paul was able to shoot the following video.

Loquacious and Well-Oiled Visitor

It was hot and we were thirsty. When Ray went to buy a coke, he realized that the coke was not for sale, but rather was part of a roulette wheel game. To get the coke required a spin of a wheel …

After lunch, we continued to press on in search of our longest ride of the journey.

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