Posts Tagged ‘Takchtahamit’


Today. A toilet audience. A wheel jammed in the gutter. A presidential 12000km from Eindhoven celebration. A belly of berries. A wind in all directions. Scree-slope roads. Climbs and drops. The mountains are getting bigger. I liked today.

Berries

Berries

He was sitting on the ridge – the little shepherd boy. From his perch he could see everything. Every possible toilet spot. And I needed to go. We often get audiences. Often kids. They just stand there and watch.

Our camping spot

Our camping spot

We only needed to go 4km today for me to reach 12000km from Eindhoven. At the 11999km mark I was greeted twice by a billboard of the Tajikistan president – one standing in a field of tulips, and one 500m further on holding some equipment while inspecting some engineering project. I was disappointed that he waited until 12001km before congratulating me with another billboard. Still, it had all the bells and whistles – and flags.

12001km

12001km

The president

The president

Reece got stuck in the gutter while getting back from the presidential address.

Reece in the gutter

Reece in the gutter

Today was a day of climbing (and even more often, descending) in the scree. It made for some slow going, but gave me a sense of achievement for getting through it.

A hot climb

A hot climb

Lovely view

Lovely view

Sunset

Sunset

And today was a day of mountains of berries – we bought some from some little girls at our lunch stop.

Eating berries

Eating berries


The third farewell and best wishes were made. The group of cyclists gathered at Vero’s had reached 12. We joked about my tent being eaten by the turtle and took more photos. Finally, after 3 nights in Dushanbe I find myself on my way to the Pamir Mountains with a new cycling partner – Reece.

The cycling gang at Vero's

The cycling gang at Vero’s

We had all heard of each other.
‘Ah – you are the Australian who got held up at the Iranian border.’
They had heard of me through Monique – a French cyclist they had met, and who I had met twice – in Bukhara and in Samarqand. I met ‘the’ Swiss couple and the Belgian couple. Each had already heard the other’s stories from this closed group of Pamir cyclists.

Reece and I set off, not realising that the road climbed and climbed and climbed. We thought that happened 100km later. The mountains are just starting now, and we have an amazing camping spot next to a bendy river. Fed and cleaned (by the water fight we had in the river), we are ready for bed.

On the road

On the road