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out of the gate

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This post is about a 15km walk from Niš to Malcha. I hide from the rain in the Stambol Gate, then I take a dirt road through the hills. It’s a bit hard to say goodbye to Rajko and the family. His seven year old granddaughter shows one last pantomime: she puts one of her […]


the concentration camp they called “Red Cross”

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This post is about a visit to the Red Cross Concentration Camp in Niš. I have the rare opportunity to ride a bicycle. After breakfast, Rajko asked me to pick a bicycle. He wanted to take me to the Red Cross Concentration Camp in Niš. It was called “Red Cross” because when Nazi Germany built […]


the cyclist

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This post is about my friend Rajko the cyclist. I stay with him in Niš, and I play with his dogs until I fall asleep. I am staying with Rajko, a retired technician and cyclist. He reminds me of my old friend Uncle Shen from Ürümqi. Just like Uncle Shen, Rajko also waited until his […]


how far

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This post is about a 17km walk from Niška Banja to Niš. I see a sign pointing towards Beijing, and I visit the Skull Tower and Niš Fortress. Niška Banja was centered around a large sanatorium. It had a dark, Soviet look about it. But the park around it was nice. 7425km There was a […]


boy holds flag

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This post is about a 14km walk from Ravni Do to Niška Banja. I run into two German cyclists and struggle with a long downhill road. The thunderstorm never came. At least not to where I was. I woke up in perfect silence under the roof of the house on the top of the hill. […]


a new dress, baby

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This post is about a 24km walk from Klisura to Ravni Do. I wake up in a wet field and go to bed near an abandoned mountain cabin. It takes forever to dry my things. And so I sit on my chair in the field and let the morning sun do the work for me. […]


1-4-0-0-0

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This post is about a walk from Pirot to Klisura. I pass the 14,000km mark of The Longest Way, and I get into a bit of rain. The clouds are Simpsons clouds. They’re hanging lazily from the sky. No: they’re sitting there, piled up on the horizon. They look like they’re not moving at all. […]


easter eggs

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This post is about an easter egg in Pirot. I take a day off and manage to find some food in a roadside restaurant. I wake up way too early, and for some reason I can’t get back to sleep. So I decide to go downstairs to have breakfast, and then I walk over to […]


the lord has risen and I have fries

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This post is about a 27km walk from Dimitrovgrad to Pirot. I struggle to find food because it’s Easter and everything is closed. The day starts easy and warm. I stop at a gas station and ask for a sim card, but they don’t have any. Phoneless, I decide to try my luck at the […]


via militaris

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This post is about a 22km walk from Dragoman to Dimitrovgrad. I pass the border from Bulgaria into Serbia. People had warned me about the highway to the border: it was under construction, and so it was very narrow and very dusty. Also it was apparently quite busy. the good road I stayed on the […]


Dragoman

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This post is about a rest day in Dragoman town in Bulgaria. I wonder about the place name, and some local guys give me an answer. I was still trying to go easy on my knee. Every time I took the stairs I could feel it act up a little, and so I stayed in […]


you should not put ketchup on pizza

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This post is about a 33km walk from Republika to Dragoman. The road is bad at first, but then it gets easy, and I run into a few cyclists. The road started out bad. It was very narrow and very busy, and I had to navigate around a lot of water left from the snow […]


snow in late April

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This post is about snow in late April in Republika. I stay in and pass the time doing laundry and writing my blog. When I woke up in a roadside guesthouse in the outskirts of Sofia, I found it hard to believe my eyes: it was snowing! Less than 24 hours earlier I had been […]


the squirrel

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This is a post about an 11km walk from Sofia to Republika. I have made the decision that I want to walk through Serbia. I knew it was going to be a short walk, but I didn’t know how difficult it was going to be. Big cities were often difficult to navigate on foot, especially […]


new means big

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This post is about a visit to the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the Sofia Synagogue. Both of them are rather large and rather new. There were two more things I wanted to see: the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral and the Synagogue of Sofia. The cathedral, because I had walked past it on my way into town, […]


why so tiny?

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This post is about a visit to the Banya Bashi Mosque and the Church of Saint George in Sofia. Both of them are very small. My friends came to take me out to lunch and show me around Sofia. There were quite a few shops and restaurants with Arabic-looking names in the city center. We […]


one sixth of the people

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This post is about a 20km walk from Lozen to Sofia. I walk carefully because I am worried about my knee. But I make it to the city. And then I walked. It wasn’t anything like real walking at first. None of that stompie-stompie of before. finding it I treaded carefully, observing my knee, trying […]


organized chaos

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This post is about some new walking gear. I spend all day packing my things, wondering what I should send home and what I should keep. The plan was simple: I was going to pack my things in the morning and leave in the afternoon. And so I packed and I packed and I packed. […]


the wondermaker’s new home

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This post is about a visit to the Rila Monastery. It’s the biggest and oldest monastery in Bulgaria, but it was rebuilt in the 19th century. We decided it wasn’t time yet for me to leave. And so we had a lazy breakfast, and then we got into my friends’ car and went southwest, into […]


me and the tree

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This post is about my return to the village of Lozen in Bulgaria. I take a walk with my friends and hang my martenitsa into a tree. After a month and a half in Germany, I finally got back to Bulgaria. I was nervous. Not about my MS: my doctors had put me in an MRI […]