Author Archives: Stoo

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  • Zadar. We Meet Again…

    Sometime in the late April of 2013, with the summer teasing its hedonistic promise just over the horizon, I crossed the border between Slovenia and Croatia. After a relatively brief but nonetheless indulgent experience in the capital of Zagreb, I was at a loss as to where to turn next. My hitchhike to India was …

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  • A poem for my father and for yours too

    Shortly after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer, I penned the following words as a gift for my dads birthday.  It seems fitting to share it with you today.  Mum thought it would be too much to read it at his funeral, but we printed a copy out, and slipped it into the breast pocket of …

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  • Hitchhike to India; leg 29: Lviv to wherever.

    As beautiful and as welcoming as Lviv was, events were taking a turn for the drunk.  It was time to move on.  Otherwise I’d get stuck in a wonderful dive bar called Bukowski’s.  Those who know me fully understand how that man is my hero, so it was a dangerous place for me to be …

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  • Hitchhike to India leg 28: Kiev to Lviv and The Tunnel of Love

    Oh lordy where do I begin.  At the beginning I suppose.  It was time to move on.  Russian separatists, Canadian alcoholics and depression were getting the better of me.  I don’t know what was making me lower; my recent romantic loss, or the last Game of Thrones episode.  I dragged my carcass to the roadside at …

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  • Kiev today

    “Oooooh don’t go to Ukraine!”  Said everyone.  “It’s dangerous!”  Well so is your kitchen.  After spending a couple of days aclimatising to the local vodka, I’ve ventured into the centre of this beautiful city, and I’ve never seen anything like it before. Now I’m not a political genius, or profess myself to have any actual …

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  • Hitchhike to India leg 27: Minsk to Kiev

    Well now this wasn’t going to be easy.  It’s some 600KM to Kiev, around seven hours without traffic, and of course the area is currently unstable.  I plan to hitch down to a place called Gomel, then strike for the Ukrainian capital from there.  On paper it looks straighforward, in reality it could be a …

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  • Belarus, Minsk and the National Ice Hockey Championships

    I’ve crammed more cultural and tourist stuff into the past two days than I’ve managed in months of getting pissed up in bars around the world.  This is due in no small part to traveling with my Czech friends, who of course have their own car.  So up and down the country we zip, visiting …

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  • Hitchhike to India leg 26; Vilnius to Minsk and beyond…

    This should be pretty easy.  So easy that I break my usual tradition of getting up at the crack of dawn to catch the morning traffic, and I lazily make my way to the first hitch spot for around midday.  I’ve a nice big MINSK sign, added to that a little drawing of two hockey …

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  • Vilnius and Trakai Castle

    The sun is shining and the people are singing.  Literally.  I’ve managed to stumble onto a day of festivity in the Lithuanian capital, as everywhere you turn people are performing on the streets.  It seems as the whole city has come to life for a traditional “day of music”, when bands and artists of all …

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