Explorer Mikael Strandberg

On A Bicycle from New Zeeland to Cairo, part 2

When I saw the pyramids at Giza 1994 I had spent almost 7 years all together on a bicycle. And cycled approximately 90 000 km. During the last 6 months I had been taking my bicycle into the tent regularly. As you can see on the first image taken in the Sinai. The journey from Lahore to Cairo was full of drama.
 
After leaving Quetta I had to fend myself against herds of aggressive dogs. One serious attack happened at dusk in a tribal village, where I got away thanks to the darkness of the night. In Iran I was provoked oftenly at police posts. My friend got his biked knicked whilst we were sleeping. My film camera was confiscated. In eastern Turkey you had to be skilled to avoid the aggressive dogs. Same thing through Jordan. My tent was cut into two by sharp rocks thrown at tent.
 
All this said, I mainly remember all the friendly, generous and hspitable people on route. Especially in Turkey, Iran and Syria. Most of all I remember India!
 
I started in Calcutta. Back in those days it was…like a scene from Dantes inferno. From there I followed the Great Trunk Road to New Dehli. Once I got knocked over by a lorry, but survived. People came from nowhere to help me. This stretch was full of people. So many that I at times couldn´t even stop for a pee! every meal I had, I was watched by crowds of curious people.
 
Only rest I had was when I cycled into Kahna National Park. Like a paradise. I came to see tigers. And I did the next day from the top of an elephant. At exactly the same place I had passed on the bike the previous day. Two tigers. I saw my first tiger in Malaysia, when I came downhill on the bike. I even took a photo of it. 5 metres away. I only feared loosing my bike in those days!
 
Once back home in Sweden, I realized I could make this life in to a job. Thanks to the travel program Packat and Klart who gave me lots of space and finished with a great interview.

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