I’ve been riding the Manta for 3 years so I feel it’s about time that I wrote about it. Sorry Jon for how long it’s taken.
Long-distance tourers store their things in Ortliebs, put Schwalbe Marathons on their wheels and sit on a Brooks B17. That was how the world seemed back in 2010 when I started buying things to go on my tour. Knowing not much, I decided that everyone else probably knew best. I picked up a complete set of Ortliebs for my stuff
After crossing the Danube into Bulgaria, I made my way through town. It was nearly time for the sun to go down so I took the small road instead of the main road with the idea it?d be easier to wild camp on the side of it. My GPS took me down a rather small road and through the poorest part of town, where the Roma lived. At the entrance to the area one guy warned me ?no go. gypsies!? I thanked him and kept going. 200 metres later, another guy just said ?scheisse? and
After leaving Ukraine it was into Moldova, the poorest country in Europe. The roads were as potholey as you?d expected and went up and down for seemingly no reason at all which combined with the headwind and cooler weather finally catching me on my push south made for a very tiring time. My first day I decided to avoid the main road and followed the border, which meant there wasn?t much traffic but even less by the way of people or things to buy in the shops. I was doing quite badly