Good evening from Moscow. Today is day 23 of the trip and it feels like a good time to speak to you again. The last time I spoke I was in Poland going separate ways from my friend Jamie who was also traveling around Europe.
What a ride I've had up till now. So I continued through Poland and made my way through the length of it stopping at Warsaw for two nights along the way. Lovely city which I really enjoyed seeing. Plus I had a nice place to stay for the nights there. My own little wood cabin in the city. I would never have thought it existed.
After this I continued for the Russian border travelling through Lithuania and Latvia. Lithuania was great. I had rain every single day up till about day 19 I think. I stopped in the city of Vilnius for the night because the weather was so bad I just couldn't ride and smile, so I stopped in a nice little hostel. Dried my stuff and got warm and explored on foot.
So while I was in Latvia I probably had one of the most fun days of riding. The GPS took me into the middle of nowhere as a shortcut which was brilliant. Proper off road riding for the day and the views were great. Very close to the Russian border.
I found a little town which had a hotel. This place was proper cheap and I was worried about leaving my bike outside. Not a problem. Secure it in the lobby they said. So I did. That was a first, putting my motorbike in a hotel lobby to keep it safe.
Next day I headed for the border. I was told before hand that the Russian side would give me the problems. Well... the problems I had was on the Latvian side. They wouldn't let me cross until I showed them a green card. This is Latvian vehicle insurance. I spent ages explaining my UK policy covers me for all EU states. Eventually I got let through with the help of a very nice guy who spoke English. The Russian side was no problems at all. Got all the stamps and was let through easy. At this point I didn't even have Russian vehicle insurance.
So that's it! I'm in russia! I've made it to Russia on a motorbike. This is crazy. What's even more crazy is the reality of this trip. This is such a small distance compared to where I want to try and get too. But it's a fantastic start.
So now is where it gets real interesting and eventful. I made my way over the next two days to Moscow. The plan was to meet a guy called Vladimir. This was not a problem and he hosted me for four days which was brilliant. Had a great time exploring the city and speaking to him about all kinds of stuff. I even got a cheeky climbing session in at the local gym.
However, when it was time to leave I headed south. Got 300 km and the bike broke. It won't engage the top gear. I phoned Vladimir and he recommended I come back to the city as it's the best place to be in the country for repairing a bike. He's a biker too and has contacts. It took me five hours to get back which was painful. A long day in the saddle of a bike that's not renowned for comfort. Well, this guy sorted me out big time. The bike is in the garage, I'm in a cheap hostel in the city and all calls are being directed to Vladimir as he can speak Russian and will relay everything to me. And this is my situation right now. I sit and wait. Hopefully me and Penny (the bike) will be back on the road soon.
Thanks for taking the time to read. I'm sorry it's a long post this time but I've been busy. Take care and I shall write real soon to let you know what's happening.
Bye for now.