Tag: cycling

Being a guest in Morocco

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The hospitality of rural Morocco continued to impress as I slowly cycled south. So much so, I began to wonder if I would need my tent(or my cooking pots, or my spice kit, or my campstove, or my sleeping mat, or any of the self-sufficient gear I schlepp everywhere) at all in this country – or would it be like this in all Islamic countries? Is this a Moroccan thing, or a Muslim thing? I was welcomed to the country numerous times with “American? Ah, then this is your country!”
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Welcome to Morocco

Regatear. To haggle. One of the big words I learned in Sevilla. “Desde el ferry, Charlie, start haggling even at the ferry to Ceuta,” advised my friend Alberto.

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I’ve never been good at haggling – in Mexico I figured even if I was getting ripped off, it was still cheap, so I never worked up the guts to talk anyone down. But now, with a long stretch of Africa ahead of me, and a much more highly developed thriftiness than ever before, I figured it was time to learn. (more…)

Photos: Spain

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Catalunya and the Barcelona – Madrid trip

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Madrid

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My documentation of the frame welding process in Madrid

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Boots of Spanish Leather

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The trip started around the corner from my friend Lena’s squat, at the public library. It was one of the few times in Catalunya I sensed animosity for speaking in Castellano (regular Spanish)

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May Day in Bavaria: a waking nightmare

The day starts like any other; we pick the slugs off the tent, I run a brush through my pony tail. Breakfast, some stretching and some pushups; a liesurely breaking of camp.
But when we get back on the bike path, it isn’t long before we realize – it’s the first of May, which is a special day for villages all across Bavaria. (more…)

A’dam to Belgium

We didn’t leave right away, of course.

A couple more days at the squat in Leiden…. working the security-barricade door at a huge techno party; “Whaddya mean everyone has to have invitations? Nobody has an invitation!”…. an impromptu scavenger hunt, conceived on a whim, with our legs dangling over the canal: one broken inner tube, some cat hair, and a poster with Dutch written on it; one white flower, a high-pitched noise, and one shoestring; all found within 45 minutes on the brisk Spring streets of Leiden…. a speech, requested by our host after a Wednesday night eetcafe, about my trip and my philosophies…. one final, quiet dinner with Sandor – an oldschool squatter with the use of only one arm(still rides his bike – coaster brake – still rolls spliffs no problem and still cooks vegan gourmet deliciousness)…. some city sights we didn’t discover till our last day…. aah Leiden – one of the gems of Holland.
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Conflict on the road to growth

It wasn’t all bubbles and buttons, though. Lily and I had our share of conflict. I suppose it’s natural, when any couple spends every single moment together, waking and sleeping, never being apart for longer than a bathroom break – especially with the added stresses of traveling. Yet it must be mentioned that our greatest attraction – each others’ strength – was also the source of our greatest conflict.

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The Vélorution

Amsterdam wasn’t just coffeeshops and bikes to me. For me, Amsterdam was where I felt like I really joined the Revolution.

This revolution – it’s not in the history books yet, but (more…)

Amsterdam: the bike dream

The sky is contoured, like a topographical map suspended in an ancient cosmic dome. Puffy white mountains move at the rate of eons, roiling slowly, imperceptibly, across a great ocean of sapphire crystal blue, adamantly driven by condensation-drenched forests of darkening matte gray.
As you step onto the streets of Amsterdam, (more…)