An update from an epic round the world ride:
At the age of 53, Robert Halkett gave up his comfortable, secure and (as he describes it) somewhat boring life in London to ride a bicycle around the world. When Rob set off in summer 2008, it had been nearly 30 since he’d even ridden a bicycle
Three years on, Rob’s a seasoned cyclist who’s tackled four continents and has thousands of kilometers under his wheels.
Rob writes from the heart, making this blog an excellent and inspiring read.
So far Rob’s taken on Europe, Asia, Oceania and South America.
His writing is very descriptive, often humorous and always inspiring. These are a few of his observations from a recent post entitled Bangladesh and so many People:
My experience in Bangladesh was the closest I will ever come to rock star status.
Whenever I was a crowd of people would form around me and just stare in complete amazement. If I stopped for food people would cram into the restaurant to watch me eat and drink, with the restaurant owner shouting from the back of the crowd, probably telling them to leave me alone or to let me eat in peace.
I soon realised that once he had everyone out of the place there would be room for his family to come and have a look. If I stopped to ask directions or just pulled off the road to say hello to someone celebrity status was conferred on that person and as I rode off and looked back a crowd would form around them wanting to know what I was doing.
This happened every day, not just once but on every occasion that I stopped. I calculated that about 50 people an hour stopped to look at me as I passed.
Bangladeshi curiosity is wonderful, the questions always began with my country of origin then moved onto family, job, salary and finally what did I think of Bangladesh. In the town of Khulna in the south of the country a crowd gathered outside the hotel where I was staying to catch a glimpse of the Foreigner.
It shows just how far off the tourist radar Bangladesh has become. In the month I was traveling around I saw no other Westerners. When I went to the Thai Embassy in Dhaka I expected to meet a couple of people on the road, there is always someone applying for a visa but not here. I asked the hotel owner how many Westerner had checked into his hotel this year and he said none.
The country’s image is one of War, overcrowding, poverty and floods so not exactly the place that would immediately spring to mind when you’re planning a holiday. As always the country’s image could not be further from the truth. Yes it’s overcrowded and poor but I didn’t see the sort of poverty and overcrowding that I had experienced in India.
Click on the Where I Am section to find well-organized links to posts from all the countries Rob has cycled through so far.
Whether it’s More from the Axis you stumble upon or Everything’s Gonna be Alright, you’re guaranteed a good read. Follow Rob’s Bike Ride Around the World and see how he fares as he continues his ride around the world.