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  #61  
Old 25 Jul 2012
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Odessa

450 km from Melitopol..first 250K was rougher than yesterday...last 200K..sheer dream... like all roads should be.
Staying at Londonskaya..an old timer by the Pushkin square..over looking the Black Sea...
Massage now then to Arcadia.
Ukrainians are already,, Europeans indeed. Ah..sense of civility is back...
Twice today ,, as I took a break in the shade by the road side ,, Ukranian bikers stopped ,, one going other way ,, to see if I was all right.,, Outside of my hotel on the promenade ,, musicians ,, a duet playing a cello and violin ,, further down ,, a jazz quartet...
Speaking English is not a shame any more ,, waiters,,,prostitutes ,,normal pedestrians speaks English and wants to use it ,,
At a small benzine station ,, a woman cleaning about came over to help me with the pumping ,, just so she can practice her English. And when you say thank you ,, they love to respond with a bit of British twang ,, " Not at all " They must have seen old Poirot series.

Last edited by seouljoe; 26 Jul 2012 at 02:26.
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  #62  
Old 26 Jul 2012
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Tomorrow...daunting Moldova..hearing shitty road.
Tonight...sushi... Now Thai massage...later ballet Don Giovani at the BXIA.. Ah Odessa.
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  #63  
Old 27 Jul 2012
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Left Odessa at 7AM..150 km to kiev,, great road then turned west to Moldovan border for 80km..of pot holes...no kafe.. Then greasy Moldovan...immigration and customs...soon Transnistria ... Went thru four borders..while my immigraton card disappeared..Moldovan cop took 30bucks for not havig Moldovan insurance when there is nowhere to buy them...
In Chisinau.. Found a nice hotel for 90 euro...pool...bike in the closed garden gate...Vis Pas...very friendly ..Feel like I am in Palm Springs this hotel. Pics at my site. Shower ,, din din and to bed for Bucaresti manana ,,

Last edited by seouljoe; 27 Jul 2012 at 17:12.
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  #64  
Old 28 Jul 2012
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To Bucaresti ...
Went to bed last night at 8 ,, took a snooze to wake up for the Olympic opening ceremony,, at 11PM ,, it looked like it will be an all night thing ,, turned the tube off and went back to bed, Woke at 4 AM ,,,last night's wedding party has moved to the swimming pool. Moldovans party hard.
Had reception brew me an espresso ,, took M1 out of Chisinau to west then south. Contrary to my feelings , Moldova is quite beautiful and well organized. The road was fantastic as well. 80 KM away was the border to Romania,, took 20 minutes from Moldova ,,, Romanian guards are having a meeting. Waited 45 minutes then another 20 minutes to clear the border ,, I feared bad road,, to my surprise ,, great road ,, with sporadic road work congestion. Romanians are very animate people ,, use lot of hands for gestures,, instantly friendly ,, and while I was having lunch ,, a very normal looking guy points to my bike and tells me to come ,, wondering I walked over ,, he says I must pay parking fee of 3 euro ,, young people in the restaurant,, shaking their heads and fingers saying no ,, I yelled at SOB and he quietly went away ,, and when I was about to take after the lunch ,, a bum showed up ,, hitting me for money. I just took off.
If Moldova is Taiwan ,, Romania is Viet Nam ,, Surprising that Romanian GDP is bigger ,, earlier Euro zone entry. Romanian country side is like the Sunday Farmer's Market ,, horses ,, goats ,, sheep ,, cows ,, people ,, carts are all out on the street. It's the Latin blood vs northern Slavic blood. Whew ,,
In Bucarest ,, found a cute boutique hotel on Booking.com for 57 euros ,, all Ikea stuff but big bed. Hotel Christina ,, quiet street and no traffic noise. Bike parked right in the entrance off the street. Owner has a wonderful warm personality. Good restaurant,,, around the corner is a place called Mon Amor..Erotic massage... great service.
Tomorrow to Sofia, Bulgaria.

Last edited by seouljoe; 3 Feb 2014 at 12:38.
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  #65  
Old 29 Jul 2012
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Sofia

Today's ride was an absolute biker's fantasy ,, over the mountains ,, endless curving road ,, beneath ,, wide valleys and open fields ,,and mountains standing proud like the Bulgarians ,, Every one ,, especially Romanians warned me about Bulgaria ,, negative things,, they don't speak English , Every Bulgarian I've met spoke English ,, they are kind ,, they are gentle ,,, and the food taste great,, at a small road side restaurant ,, I had a simple tomato and cue cumber salad with cheese sprinkled on ,, dark olives ,, and it was wonderfully filling and tasted great.
Again found a hotel on Booking.com ,, 5 star,, Hotel Anel for 72 Euros ,, management saw my bike and upgraded me to a bloody suite with fruit basket. Ah ,, I can stay here for a week !

Went to Motto restaurant , the most chic chic youngish restaurant ,, great food ,, all for a tip for a doorman in Korea.
Walked back to the hotel ,, what a beautiful city ,, I almost compare it to Praha ,, !

Last edited by seouljoe; 3 Feb 2014 at 11:13.
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  #66  
Old 30 Jul 2012
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Ohrid, Macedonia

450 KM of another endless curves and mountains ,, this Balkan mountain range beats not only the Urals ,, perhaps even Altai. Mountain after mountain,, up and down ,, all 450 KM of it ,, and the most friendly border guards ,, gives me the travel brochure ,, all speaks perfect English with lots of smiles to boot. If no English ,, I can use German, French , Italian ,, bring it on.
Good drivers ,, great road ,, but I still have post Siberia trauma ,, can not make a run for it ,, don't trust the road yet.
I am here 90 KM from the Albanian border ,,, ready to make the run to catch the ferry to Italy tomorrow night, from Durres. Sitting at the Orhid , the lakes ,, reminds me of Cuomo, in Italy. Had a nice swim ,, right off the hotel restaurant..
This trip is slowly coming to an end ,, as soon as I cross to Italy ,, things will move fast.
PS.. More west and south,,I go... Progressively women are becoming shorter and wider urghhhh!
I miss Russian women !!!!!

Last edited by seouljoe; 31 Jul 2012 at 15:30.
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  #67  
Old 31 Jul 2012
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To Albania ,, TIrana and Durres,,

There are no flat land in Albania...another gut wrenching mountain curve road...filled with goats..sheeps..and sherpherds... The capitol Tirrana could be Beirut in 80s during the war..totally immersed in Arab throng...the music..behavior of the drivers...Got the 11 PM ferry ticket for a private room and bike for 58 Euro...Lunch 14... Hotel by hour 20..now to the beach for a tan to kill the time,,,
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  #68  
Old 31 Jul 2012
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Hi Joe

Me and Mark (Bushman) took the ferry Durres to Ancona at the beginning of July. We slept on deck because the air conditioning in the cabins was bust - great laying on the deck looking at the stars. We loved Albania (not Durres though) - watch out for the beggars at the port. We took the old mountain road from Permet to Berat - it took us 7 hours to travel 70 kilometres... the locals told us it was a dangerous road and nobody uses it but it was good fun (not so much fun on a Harley I suspect !)

Neo tells me that he is home safe - pleased he is safe, sad he didn't fulfil his dream of riding home.

Martin
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  #69  
Old 31 Jul 2012
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I have been in in Russia for 12 days then Ukraine first 500k great roads then 700k of the worst roads I have have seen M13 only thing was very little traffic for 200 k
In Moldova Chisinau after night ware shakedown crossing thru Transnititera
Really enjoying your reports
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  #70  
Old 1 Aug 2012
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Originally Posted by strimstrum View Post
Hi Joe

Me and Mark (Bushman) took the ferry Durres to Ancona at the beginning of July. We slept on deck because the air conditioning in the cabins was bust - great laying on the deck looking at the stars. We loved Albania (not Durres though) - watch out for the beggars at the port. We took the old mountain road from Permet to Berat - it took us 7 hours to travel 70 kilometres... the locals told us it was a dangerous road and nobody uses it but it was good fun (not so much fun on a Harley I suspect !)

Neo tells me that he is home safe - pleased he is safe, sad he didn't fulfil his dream of riding home.

Martin
Hey Martin ,, I took pictures of those little buggers and their mom ,, again pregnant ,, pics at my site.
Korean bikers sent Neo a ticket out of our membership dues and contributions.

Last edited by seouljoe; 1 Aug 2012 at 21:34.
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  #71  
Old 1 Aug 2012
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In Ancona ,,

Long drive ,, from Bari ,, the ferry from Durres ,, bikes gets loaded dead last ,, but we get off first also.
Having a private cabin really helped ,, did get few winks but dead tired all day.
Half autostrada ,, half beach road ,, checked into Grand Hotel ,, nice set up great view ,, 95 Euro ,, met a young guy, who was walking his dog ,, who spoke perfect English ,, asked him for a good restaurant ,, had him send me an EM when he got home ,, this is his report.

This is all within half an hour, while I was having a on the balcony he was below ,, gave him my name card.
"Hi Mr. Park, this is my suggestion about where to eat in Ancona:

Ristorante Giacchetti
It's 7 km approx from Ancona, in Portonovo's bay, a place you must see in this season. It's a bit expensive but u can eat very good fish there. I usually take pasta like "ciavattoni allo scoglio" as entree and then some fresh fish (ask the waiter). They have some awesome deserts too (like mandarino di ciculli icecream or dolcetti homemade). This is best place you can go in my opinion.
The bay is full of other restaurants anyway, so fish everywhere!

If you want to stay in town (means NO MOTORBIKE), Strabacco Restaurant is also good; it's an "osteria" so strange mood for you maybe. It's just about 1.5 km from your hotel, u can walk down the Viale della Vittoria and ask there.

After dinner you can go to Mole Vanvitelliana for a ; that's the center of nightlife in summer. I'd join you for a but i'm having some problems with my kidneys (got rocks inside them, don't kow the english name) these days!
Anyway, enjoy your staying here and have a safe trip back home!


P.S.: Don't go to Passetto Restaurant (i'ts in front of your hotel), everyone told me i'ts BAD!"

Went to Osteria ,, great rustic atmosphere ,, orderd a dozen this and that with a bottle of Barolo Reservo ,, hung out for three hours chatting up thick wasted ladies ,,

Tomorrow to MIlano ,,, Friday dropping the bike off at the forwarders ,, fly home Saturday ,, wife picking me up on Sunday.
Will paint Milano red for last two nights. Yiiii Haaaaa !!!!!

Last edited by seouljoe; 3 Feb 2014 at 11:25.
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  #72  
Old 1 Aug 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EyeCake View Post
I have been in in Russia for 12 days then Ukraine first 500k great roads then 700k of the worst roads I have have seen M13 only thing was very little traffic for 200 k
In Moldova Chisinau after night ware shakedown crossing thru Transnititera
Really enjoying your reports
You will find Moldovans great ,, the road gets progressively better ,, surface wise , traffic wise ,, it will get worse.
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  #73  
Old 2 Aug 2012
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End of RTW

In Milano... This ends my RTW.
Been a blast. Champagne tonight.
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  #74  
Old 2 Aug 2012
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Great trip

Well done! Thanks for keeping us entertained. Great style of reporting for your ride! And fast!

Have a good flight back home.

In my limited exerience it's very strange indeed sitting in a plane all that time, going right back to where you started.....

Cheers with champagne
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  #75  
Old 2 Aug 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seouljoe View Post
In Milano... This ends my RTW.
Been a blast. Champagne tonight.
I raise my glass to you Joe.
Have a good flight back home - shame you didn't get to the UK as me and Mark would have enjoyed your company. Maybe we can catch each other in South Korea sometime ...

Give our regards to Neo

Martin
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