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India: Yay! Our 100th Blog! Back to where we started and beyond…

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Come to think of it, we actually started our trip ON the bike from Sangrur back in 2011.  We had shipped the bike from Houston to Delhi and parked in Sangrur for a while.  You can say this was our 1st homecoming after a year and a half journey through Asia, Australia, and Africa.  Moreover, while I had seen…

India: Heading back up north!

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Heading from Karnataka we raced into Maharashtra.  You could see a shifting from the loongi to the all white dhoti.  The men looked like extras out of old post-Independence movies wearing white kurtas, white dhotis, and white Nehru hats.  We wanted to visit Nanded where one of the 5 takhts (the 5 most important gurudwaras) is located…but getting to the …

India: Heading deeper and deeper into the South!

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As Africans have Cape to Cairo, in India…we have Kashmir to Kanyakumari (the southernmost tip of India).  It’s also the place where three oceans meet, the Arabian Sea, the Indian Ocean, and the Bay of Bengal.  We took a mostly coast route but decided to visit the Padmanabhapuram Palace which is supposed to be largest wooden palace in Asia. …

India: Oye Kidaaaaannnn South India!!!

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The amount of distance that needed to be covered in the South was intimidating! We had to haul some ass and get this trip on the move! Getting out of Goa we headed out into Karnataka. All this time Nick’s thumb was hurting, especially over the combination speed bumps…7 speed breakers in a row?  What’s the point??? That little…

(Please read at your own risk!) Back to the Motherland, let the madness begin!

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This blog contains adult language, please read at your own risk. Sorry to those that may be offended. This is not our everyday language but this blog is best understood using a certain kind of language. Before we begin this chapter of our journey we would like to give a crash course on the definition of a “CHOOT”.  It’s a…

Ethiopia: It’s time to get out of Africa!

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It was a big relief to finish the “Road to hell” in one piece. It was mentally and physically challenging, stressful, and just pure survival. Nick was super relieved especially travelling with a wife for obvious reasons of abduction, looting and even murder. 2 days later a British guy was shot dead travelling in a Land Rover and robbed and…

Kenya Part 2: Return to the land of Kalasinghas and what next?

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Again, easy border crossing  into Kenya. Instead of going the Kisumu way, we decided on going to Eldoret. It was chilly and started to rain decently hard as we rolled in. Eldoret is kind of a messy city. The roads were a bit tight and bad and with water and silt it was not pretty. We rode around the whole town…

Uganda: A lush, green paradise!

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The border crossing into Uganda was simple with the usual road tax charged in these African countries.  We decided to ride to Jinja which is where Nile or White Nile supposedly starts…I won’t get into that because it seems people take the location of the Nile source pretty seriously.  We ended up camping out at the Adrift Camp which had…

Kenya part 1: Feelin’ the love in East Africa!

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Getting into Kenya was nothing too complicated except for being hounded by Masaai ladies.  They kept on pushing their beaded jewelry on me saying it was a free gift from them to me.  Saw this trick in Laos We rolled into Nairobi and met up with my Uncle Pili.  My Nanaji’s parents (my great-grandparents) and his siblings moved to Kenya…

Tanzania: Tanzania…this is what we’ve been missing!

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Crossing the border into Tanzania was an ordinary affair…usual money changers, customs clearance agents, and insurance agents heckling for your attention and your business…except for one thing.  A customs official who actually knew more about the carnet de passage than we do.  The Tanzanian customs officer had the knowledge and presence of mind to fill in the middle section of…

Mozambique – Malawi: Mozambique Pit Stop and the Lure of Lake Malawi!

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Mozambique was a short affair. In terms of scenery there wasn’t much in north Mozambique. It was dry and pretty poor. We passed village after village of mud houses and bags full of coal to sell lined up on the road.  As with most of the other countries, you had the occasional crowd surrounding the water pump with plastic Jerry…

Zimbabwe: Finally the real Africa!

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We decided to see the Victoria Falls from the Zimbabwe side since we were more interested in getting a frontal view.  From Zambia, you are getting a view right on top.  We got a bit late crossing into Zimbabwe, but along the way we saw tons of wild elephants taking shade under trees near the road.  It was getting a…

Botswana…Plenty of cows…where’s the people?

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Looking back at the Namibia post, I realized that I kept repeating the fact that it was damn hot in Namibia.  That’s because it was freakin hot in Namibia.  And so was Botswana.  We took the Trans-Kalahari border crossing into Botswana and again found dryness.  Just flat dryness.  Then the dead cows started.  Either due to heat, lack of rain,…

Namibia: Welcome to the inferno!

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South Africa had been such an amazing time, we spent a month traveling through and still felt as if there was so much to see.  It was time to move on though, so we headed to Namibia.  People had told us it was absolutely beautiful.  And that there’s few tar roads.  We were a bit worried about sand because of…

South Africa: South Africa: Durban, Lesotho(maybe), and the Wild Coast!!

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Halfway to Durban we got the greatest gift…sunshine!  We hit the coast around Salt Rock and stopped for an hour to chill and figure out where to stay.    An Indian man came up to us and started chatting and suggested a place in Tongaat.  We should’ve known that the place would be a little suspect when the guy was…

South Africa: Our second leg begins…AFRICA!

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Coming to Johannesburg was a surreal experience, I hadn’t seen Nick in a week and considering that we’ve been together 24/7 for a year , that was a long time! Nick had been staying at his friend’s Bhaskar’s house.  They both picked me up from the airport.  I was a bit zonked out because the trip had been long as hell.…

Australia: Finishing our first leg up in Melbourne and a quickie to Houston!

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Getting out of Sydney was tough!  We were leaving behind a familiar bed, it’s so weird how we get used to comforts so quick!  But right outside of Sydney, heading south on the coastal road, were amazing views of the ocean and terrain.  Really one of the most amazing coastal roads we’ve done so far!  Luckily we found an…

Australia: Cairns, Atherton Tablelands revisited, Daintree…and Sydney at last!

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In Cairns our big thing was to get an oil change since it was overdue and we also had some oil leakage.  Turns out the BMW Motorrad there isn’t too friendly and they weren’t really willing to help us or answer any questions.  After running around to almost every store on the main street, we found the Castrol Power…

Australia: Australia at last but bittersweet…

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Touching down in Darwin, Australia was bittersweet.  Being in Australiameant that we had finished our first leg of our trip, and we would be back to a somewhat US-like environment.  But that also meant being done with Asia.  I wouldn’t call it being back in “civilization” because that’s just degrading.  It really gets under our skin when other people say…

East Timor: Timor/ East Timor and shipping to Australia

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It was still dark when the ferry reached Kupang 15 hours from when we started.  It was around 4am!  We tried to find some place to stay but since check out time was around 12pm, it was kinda tough to find a place.  We decided to wait a bit and have a think over coffee.  Although we got decent sleep,…

Indonesia-East Timor: Flores/Kupang/East Timor

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Flores is probably the best place to go visit the Komodos orRincaIsland.  We checked out quite a few of the places that booked tours and found one that seemed willing to negotiate the price a bit better.  We were told that during the time we went (June/July) it was better to go to Rinca.  I think the other deal with…

Indonesia : Lombok/Gili T./Flores

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Before we could head out ofBali, we had two very big decisions to make.  Should we change our tires?  We were running on the same TKC we had put on in Kolkata but we had to change our rear TKC to a Karoo in Malaysia since it had run down and we knew we might have to do deal with…

Beautiful Bali!!

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Again we boarded a ferry to head to another island…Bali!  And to be honest, the ferry system has really impressed us.  Yes, it’s not luxury but the crew is used to bikes, they’re pretty nice and help out with securing the bike.  And the ferry’s have air con seating or nice seating outside although it’s plastic chairs.  There’s food available…

Yogyakarta, Mt. Bromo….BALI !!!

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We set out for Yogyakarta…orJogjakarta…which is how the locals pronounce it…that would totally throw us off!  After shaking off a few chasers and racers (just likeIndia), we got there in the evening and headed towards the area we knew we could find cheaper accommodation.  After finding a good value place, we started to settle in.  While Nick was with the…

Java-Jakarta, Bogor/Cibodas

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The next morning we were relaxed and with the sun out we headed out to BMW.  We ended up spending most of our day at BMW Motorrad, just getting brake pads, low beam buld, topping up oils etc and one of the guy’s, Tomi, helped up big time by helping us make plates to fix and reinforce both of our…

The beach at last, Padang, Muko-Muko, Ferry on to Java, Jakarta!

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After Maninjau, we headed out and again rode through beautiful, green rainforest.  We were itching to see the legendary Sumatera coast since it was so popular with surfers.  After a couple of hours of riding through the rainforest covered mountains, the elevation was gone and rice paddies faded into the ocean! Finally, the beach!  The amazing part was that we…

Bad luck begins…Lake Toba

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Lake Toba is a huge volcanic crater lake that almost seems like an ocean.  It’s really huge—you can’t see the end of it.  The next day we recovered a bit had a breakfast of banana pancake which would be a staple in Indonesia.  The place we stayed at was cheap and a good surprise from Malaysia, how long would it…

Selamat Datang di Indonesia

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We docked at Tanjung Balai around 3am.  We waited for all the other passengers to unload until we got the bike off.  Surprisingly crew members stuck around and knew exactly what they had to do.  But before then, they wanted to negotiate a price to take the bike off the ferry.  The week before our fellow bikers had negotiated…

Ahh the frustration…trying to get to Indonesia

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Getting up bright and early, we felt reluctant to leave Malaysia.  We had made so many great friends that we felt so much at home!  Tuesday had rolled around and no word from Hakim.  We decided…!  We were getting on that ferry on our own with or without Hakim.  As we decided this, I still had a weird feeling inside. …

Back to Malaysia…on to Indonesia?

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We had been in touch with a German couple, Sascha and Kerstin since we got into Malaysia.  While we were in Singapore, we got a message from them that they were going to be heading to Indonesia on Wednesday.  For bikers, shipping to Indonesia was posing a huge problem.  Shipping in the first place is a pain in the ass…the…