Day 67 : May the force be with you to Baku

10 Jul

Let’s go, before we burn.

The ride to Baku was supposed to go quick. We woke up early as we feared the heat we’d face around midday…but had to deal with wind instead. We quickly packed our tent and left our remote spot as soon as we were ready. We had no fresh food beside the few fruits that were left from yesterday, and thought we’d eat on the way.

Oblical ride

A brutal lateral wind slowed us down, and pushed us away from the road many times the whole morning. It took lot of concentration to balance ourselves between natural, lateral wind, combined with trucks aspiration coming from both sides. We felt like little flies moving with the wind.

As the area was pretty empty, we had to pedal about 20 kilometers to find a place to eat, in a bar/restaurant for the truck drivers working on the sites around. We ordered food by going in the kitchen and show the cook what we wanted from the pans, and were pleased to get something else than the shashliks we are usually offered in first place.

Friendly azeris, truck drivers

While eating, we heard a big explosion from behind, then saw a smoke cloud moving with the wind. Everybody was a bit surprised, but we’ll never know what this was.  It wouldn’t be the only ‘bang’ that day!

Getting out of the desert took much more time than we thought, because of the wind, still blowing strong in the afternoon. It was an amusing situation, that also had the advantage of decreasing the feeling of heat. The scenery remained beautiful.

The entrance in the capital had been quite hectic. We rode in insane traffic jams, caused by an accident involving the car of bribe and groom. Sad. Ten minutes later, another crash occured next to us : a car hit, full speed, the back of a bus. A good introduction to Baku. We decided to take it easy, as the traffic was very dense, and drivers a bit wild.

Baku outskirts

We have been amazed by the size of Baku. It’s a huge city, full of skyscrapers and expensive cars. It smells oil money, architecture is very modern, and many buildings are currently in progress. We reached the sea side to take a break from the traffic jams, and looked at Kazahkstan in the horizon. We realized that we reached the furthest point in Europe, and that we were at the southest point of the trip. Also that we were easter than the whole Irak.

Our contact in Baku is Tahira, a friend of a friend. We got to her flat after 12 more kilometers in Baku city center. We cycled, amazed about how gigantic this city is. We made it after some confusion to find the right building…there are too many of them. We got welcomed with lots of delicious azeri food, specially cooked for us, and were happy to take a proper shower, after 5 days in the wild.

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2 Responses to “Day 67 : May the force be with you to Baku”

  1. Seb July 11, 2012 at 7:23 am #

    Bravo les mecs!! Explosion, accidents,…Baku à l’air énorme et vachement bien développée.

  2. Aoife July 11, 2012 at 8:22 pm #

    So awesome!

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