Kazakhstan 1000 667 Michael

In Kazakhstan our paths separate. A motor noise worries me so much that I decide to move forward quickly to reach Almaty faster. It is my hope that the problem can be solved by the time I have gained, in order to be able to carry on the journey in full. This hope dies after 150km shortly after Semipalatinsk. I am very grateful when Nurlan takes me home with his sprinter. Especially his son Raslan has great joy in my misfortune. I hope he holds the pocket knife which he has received in honor. In the evening, Father Anton takes me to his house. Anton is a Russian German and is happy about the opportunity to speak German again. His church is appropriately dedicated to St. Michael. In addition to the church and vicarage, the area also contains a soup kitchen, a sports field and also serves as a recreation area for the village youth. Anton has built up all this with a lot of initiative and donation aid. In the end, Anton reminds me very much to Don Camillo even if he rejects the comparison with the indication that he disputes with no one. Even though I am not a believer, his hint “The Lord gives us only what we truly need, what we don’t need truly, he will not give us either” helped me very much through the further hard time.

Nurlan and Anton helped me finding Maxim, Roman and Sanja to take me and my motorcycle on their trucks. When Maxim told me he had parked on a slope because his starter is broken I already expect the worst. On the same evening, however againt the expectation, the Sanjas DAF broke down four times. I was being put off again and again and after 2 days is clear I need another truck. If Maxim and Roman had not been so sympathetic, I would have followed Cate’s advice and had try to find another truck earlier. The farewell to the three is very warm and I will never forget the insight into the everyday life of a Kyrgyz truck driver. I continue with Viktor and his 30 years old Volvo.

Viktor drives incredibly long and I am optimistic to be able to say goodbye to Cate before she drives into the Pamir. When Viktor stops to unload before Almaty starts one of the worst days of the trip. The crane didn’t come on time, Viktor and I are frustrated, Cate will be gone when I arrive. When I discover black bumblebees I thought Nature consoles me and try to distract me with photography. Unfortunately, they fly away before I can make pictures. The crane comes and with it a thunderstorm it seems as is now nature also against me. As the crane lifts the first agricultural machine over my motorbike, I start to film, in order not to miss the moment in which the rope brakes and my motorcycle got dashed. With the second machine, I hope already that this happens but instead the storm is getting serious. My equipment is in the yard as pouring rain goes down and splashed  the dirt of the ground all over it. I tried to help Viktor to install the tarpaulins. Viktors Russian instructions didn’t help me and so I had to accept that I am not useful to him. I only can wait in the driver’s cab until everyone else has done the work in the rain. A miserable feeling, which is only surpassed by the fact that the truck stucked in the mud at this location and we had to stay there for the night.

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The next day I arrive at the lunch time in Almaty. Cate went on in the morning. She had solved a flat tire and a frame break during my Odyssey. The warm welcome at the Freeriders encourages me incredibly. With workshop, hostel, pub and bikeshop everything is gathered in one place which I need at this moment. My bad luck doesn’t stop, the first day after my arrival the workshop is under water. After the late disassembly, it is clear that the piston bearing is broken. A replacement engine would have a new engine number and generated not just additional shipping charges there will be also extra costs for the carnet. To rebuild the engine and make the motorcycle fine again had attraceted me anyway so I decided to try it. Fortunately, Roland from my workshop at home KTM-Müller in Waltenhofen does not let me hang. He supports me with professional advice and sends the needed parts in the express. I use the waiting time to do other things nevertheless it is still too much time. Parallel to me, Cate has a hard time on the Pamir and I feel responsive because I motivated her. It felt very good when Valentina and Matteo distract me a little. When Jürgen arrives I’m back on track, a motorcyclist who thinks similarly and with whom I can have fun. Together with the Freeriders team I assembled the engine again and can start after two days. I am very grateful to everyone. The feeling that in distress the people always stand aside is consoling over the now canceled Pamir Highway.
Meanwhile, Cate has successfully mastered her Pamir adventure. In addition to the driver’s challenges, she had to repair a broken forkseal, again a broken frame and the loss of mobile phone, actioncam and memory cards with the pictures. It fulfills me proudly that she mastered all these difficulties without me nevertheless I would rather have been there for her.

The repair of the engine is unfortunately a failure. After about 200km the engine goes out after a rattling of the chain. The engine loses oil but starts again. In the middle of nowhere, I have no other choice than continue, until the next sound which sealed the end of the valves. It takes a long time until Jarad arrives with his minibus. He takes me to Taraz and his brother Jubaniaz offers me the next two days accommodation. Again, my motorcycle is a kids playground. His daughter Janija and the neighbors Anella have a lot more fun with it than me. My special thanks go to the staff of the German Cultural Center Shambyl and especially to Nikolai. Without Nikolai I could not have sent my equipment, haven’t found Konstantin where the motorcycle is parked now and could not have convinced me at Customs of the impossibility of a quick solution. Visa, vacation, costs everything speaks against another attempt to repair the motorcycle, but I don’t want to give up and fly home. Not for Cate, not for anyone else, just for me, my pride and certainty for the future that I haven’t given up. While in all my past journeys the challenge lay in the driving strain, this time it will be the emotional burden. Without a motorcycle I lack the freedom I seek in the distance, I will not get around the permanent confrontation with my unhappy story and every day I will see Cate driving off with her motorcycle.  My first adventure as backpacker can start.



  • steve

    Hey michael, tut mir sehr leid, was in terez passiert ist. Verdammtes pech! Deine fotos sind uebrigens super! BG aus aktobe, steve

    • Maikel

      Hallo Steve, danke aber woher wusstest du den das schon? Hab doch zum Zeitpunkt deines Kommentars noch gar nichts veröffentlicht??? 😉

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