After (felt) one million changes where the next trip should go (oilfields in Myanmar, Argentinia, Ashura-feast in Iran, Kingdom of Lesotho, Morroco, Albania, Belaruss, Transnistria, Albania again, Germany, Romania, Slovakia) the ukranian Carpatians became the destination. The arrival worked out perfect. My bus Leipzig-Vienna started on time at sunday 4th of august, one changing in Vienna, in Bratislava I changed to the nighttrain to Humene. As said in the schedule I arrived on the minute at monday 6.35 am. At the Tesco supermarket I got some provision and packed the bike ready for take-off.
About 11 am I started, immediately took the first turn wrong and noticed that twenty kilometres later. Anyway, there are still three weeks left. In the afternoon I was invited by Majo for a coffee. He is a horsebreeder living with his family in a beautiful timber cottage into the woods. We chatted for a while on the porch before I went higher in the mountains. Earlier in the valley a local cyclist warned me about bears, so for the night I hanged my provisions away from the tent into some tree.
The next day I arrived at the borderstation to Ukraine and I wasn`t shure if I gonna have to pay some kind of inofficial „fee“. Prophylactic I divided the cash from the passport and stored two ten-euro notes in my breast pocket but it was unnecessary. Whith these unique countenance of displeasure, contempt and demonstrative desinterest, which I have seen often by borderguards, the lady throwed my stamped passport back on the table an I was allowed to enter the country (officially as a car). When I planned my trip I already had read that roads in Ukraine have a lot of potholes and they immediately started. But the forests where as beautifull and untouched as in slovakia.
For two days I followed the road H13, got some cucumbers bestowed from Miss Kirchberg and chatted with an old man who was deployed in Dresden as a soldier in GDR. Than I left road H13 and followed the river Stry passing by on fileds ploughed by horses and a long string of villages only connected by dirtroads and leftovers of paved roads.
By arriving in the city Stry the mountains where gone and flatlands started. I noticed that in special by the change of weather. In the last days It rained daily, there where thunderstorms and maximum thirty degrees in the afternoon. Now there was almost always blue sky and the temperatures reached forty degrees. Right before the city Stry I slept on the riverbank, far away from the mainroad where I did not expected to be disturbed but I was wrong. It was about 11 pm when the first truck came noisy to (I guess illegial because of the time) load gravel in the riverbank. My tent was only three meter away from the path and on the upper end of the bank. So when the truck came back loaded with a few tons of gravel the driver gave full throttle right next to my head lighting the tent as bright as day by the headlights of the truck. I was to lazy to change the place and thought everytime „that was the last one“, finally they came six times until half past one…
From Stry there where just two days left to Iwano Frankiwsk. The scenery was of flat hills with a lot of land which is not used for agriculture etc. Obviously this is very well for Flora and Fauna. Every meadow is full of blossoms, everywhere are bees, raptors and storks. At the 10th of august I arrived in Iwano Frankiwsk where cool Kwass and a dormbed waited for me.