Day 10, Uzbekistan: The first breakdown

We arrived at the Kazakh-Uzbek border in total darkness, not knowing what to expect. There was a long queue of cars, perhaps 50 or more, with their engines off. People were standing and sitting around chatting, eating, drinking, and smoking. Some were sleeping on camping mats on the ground, wrapped in their jackets. We asked one of the people how long the wait would take. He said, perhaps it would be until tomorrow evening, or longer, hard to tell. We were disappointed – no one wanted to lose a whole day sitting around here in the dust! Continue reading “Day 10, Uzbekistan: The first breakdown”

Day 7, Russia: From Volgograd to Astrakhan

The day started with waking up in a very comfortable hostel bed after a good night’s sleep. So much better than sleeping in the car! And so good to have hot showers and a fully-equipped kitchen available! Eslie then made us some absolutely delicious breakfast involving eggs, bacon, watermelon, and caviar. (He keeps buying caviar because it is so much cheaper here than in Western Europe.) Continue reading “Day 7, Russia: From Volgograd to Astrakhan”

Day 4: The Flood, and Chernobyl

At 5 in the morning I woke up from frantic ringing of the door bell and Eslie running around, making noise, and shouting that we should get up. Groggy and unaware of what was going on, I put one foot on the floor and immediately stepped into water. 

In the kitchen, water was gushing out of a grey hosepipe that was sticking out on the floor below the washing machine. Something must have burst somehow while we were sleeping. The water was already about 1 cm high everywhere and rising quickly:

Continue reading “Day 4: The Flood, and Chernobyl”

Day 3: Kiev

After successfully getting through the Ukrainian border at 1:40am and filling up on some cheap Ukrainian fuel, we decided to get to Kiev (a 600km drive) as fast as possible. We took turns driving and sleeping. I was really lucky: my turn to drive came just as dawn broke. I drove several hours through a beatiful misty landscape, with low fog rolling over the yellow fields and green hills, driving straight towards the rising sun as the clouds turned from salmon to red and then to orange. It was absolutely breathtaking. Continue reading “Day 3: Kiev”

Day 2: To the Ukraine border

We got up at around 9am, surprisingly not very hungover. Before we could leave Prague, there were a few tasks we had to do. We had to find a print shop to scan the car authorisation documents, to forward them to the Russian translators that will send the translations to Volgograd where we will hopefully be able to pick them up. We also used the print shop to print some more stickers for the car:

Continue reading “Day 2: To the Ukraine border”