Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Visiting the Ameer of Kuwait

Since we have dedicated this Round the World Trip to his highness the Ameer Shaikh Sabah Al Ahmed Al Jaber Al Sabah. The Minister of Social Affairs and Labor Dr Mohammed Al-Afasi, and Major General Faisal M.Al-Jazzaf Chairman and Director General of the Public Authority for Youth and Sports have mad arrangements for us to visit the Ameer

As well as the Crown Price His highness Shaikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah

And the Prime Minister Shaikh Nasser Al-Mohammad Al-Ahmad Al-Sabah

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Kuwait TV Interview (Arabic Channel)

Today We got interviewed by Kuwait TV "AL Safat" Program for a whole hour, It was quit interesting , they footage of our arrival and had interviews with Mr. Al-Jazzaf the head of the public Authority for Youth and Sports (Our Sponsors).

We could only have two bikes on the show since Ali got a nail in one of his tires as we were leaving to our homes after the press conference, and still hasn't fixed it.

Our Friend Khalid was kind enough to tape the interview, and put it up on Youtube.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Back home to Kuwait

We had to leave early to ride while the temperature was bearable we left at sun rise enjoying the cool morning air, about 200 Km from Hafer Albatin it started to get hot, and was 47 Degrees when we reached the hotel.

We decided to rest part of the way to Kuwait for two reasons the first is that it is really hot during mid day, and the second is that since it is Ramadhan every one who wanted to great us will only be available after sundown "Futoor".

We reached the border at sundown, then continued to Al-Jahra where we met our families, and fellow bikers in preparation to ride to the Public Authority for Youth and Sports where a press conference was held regarding our return.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

To Arar

As usual we left early to arrive in Arar during day light. We all have been down this road before it feels like we were already home.

We got the usual treatment once we entered Saudi Arabia and got stopped frequently by the police along the way asking us for our documents and writing down all the details.It started to get really hot about 100 Km from Arar and when we reached there it was 45 Deg. Centigrade.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

To Amman

It was a fairly easy trip to Amman today since it is only a two hour ride, the delay was mostly at the borders.

We went straight to the Kuwait Embassy and met Mr. Omar Al-Qenae since the Ambassador was back in Kuwait for Ramadhan.We then went to my father's apartment and had "mensef" for Lunch.

Monday, August 24, 2009

To Damascus

Before we left Husain Asked me for some Sun-block lotion, which was surprising since he had never used it during the whole trip. He managed to put too much which got into his eyes while riding, he had to stop several times to wash his eyes, and only got better later in the day.

We knew we had a long and hot day ahead of us so we left early to the "Bab Al-hawa" border crossing where we met two couples on BMW's from Greece going the other direction back home, they had just visited Syria and were asking me about our trip and Kuwait.

We reached Damascus around 6 pm, and I started to feel really tired probably due to dehydration.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

To Adana

Our next target was Adana since we wanted to spread out our distances and not ride too much in one day.

Along the way at a tool gate we had to pay an extra toll since I misplaced the ticket and handed in the ferry boarding pass instead. It must be the long riding that is getting to me.

We stopped in Aksaray for lunch and found out that there is a new freeway that recently opened on the way to Adana which made things easier.

We stayed at the Hilton which overlooked the river, and had a good restaurant and secure parking.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

To Bolu

Our Target for today was the town of Bulo in Turkey, today we leave the European continent, and enter Asia again. We left at 8:00 am and headed to the Greek Turkish border where the line to enter Greece stretched well past the Turkish side of the border. people were honking their horns in protest to how long it was taking to enter Greece.

We reached Istanbul in the afternoon, and stopped at a rest area for lunch. We also met a Turkish couple who were riding, we also found out that today was the first day of Ramadhan here, where the first day in Kuwait would be tomorrow.

After lunch we headed off to Bolu, and arrived at sundown where we had to take our own bags in to the rooms since the whole staff were having Futoor (breaking their fast).The Hotel staff recognized Ali and let us park our bikes in front of the reception.

Friday, August 21, 2009

To Kavala

We left the ferry at 6:15 am and had breakfast at the port before we headed off to Kavala. As our fellow bikers mentioned the new freeway was complete and not on our GPS which didn't matter much since the signs were everywhere.

About an hour into Greece the whether got cold and we had to put on our jackets for a few hours until it got warmer.

We reached Kavala at 1:00 PM and stayed at a lovely hotel overlooking the town, and Mediterranean. We then went into town for lunch.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Taking the Ferry

Renzo met us this morning and rode with us from Senigallia to Ancona taking the coastal road. We checked in to the ferry and went to the dock to stay inline to enter the ferry. While waiting we met many traveling bikers, and one mentioned that the freeway to Turkey was completed last year which would make our travel much easier.

Once our bikes were parked, and we were established in our cabins we had lunch in the cafeteria. The ferry had a swimming pool, WIFI service, and cell phone service. There was a shop, and a set of coin operated message chairs.

We had dinner at the restaurant and went to bed early since the ferry would arrive in Igoumenitsa around 6:00 am.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

To Senigallia

I found out today that Italy and Rome have a holiday that is quite long, the BMW dealer stated that the show room is open but the part department is closed, so I cannot buy what I need to fix the mudguard.

We visited the embassy again, and met the Ambassador Mr. Waleed Al-Khubaizi, and his staff. The Ambassador was kind enough to give us a comment, and directed us to visit L'Aquila on our way to Senigallia where an earthquake struck four months ago.

We left around noon, and stopped in L'Aquila and visited with the head of the Italian Red Cross camp, and found out that there are still 50,000 people living in the camps, some without homes, and others with homes that they are afraid to move back into since they expect that another earthquake this year.

We arrived in Sinigallia around 4:30 pm, and waited for Husain's Friend Mr. Renzo Rocchetti who he met during his ride in 1977, and had kept in touch with but has not seen him in the past 32 years.

Renzo was kind enough to show us the small town of Senigallia and after dinner gave each one of us a medal, and a plaque from the Senigallia Motorcycle Club.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

To Rome

After a good night's sleep we left the hotel at 10 am on our way to Rome after filling our bikes with fuel at a Q8 gas station.

Although it started to get hot yesterday, today we reached 40 Degrees on the road to Rome which I said was good practice for when we reach Kuwait.

We reached the Kuwait Embassy at 2:30 pm and met Mr. Hamed Al-Ali, Mr. Omar Al-Hajri, and Mr. Anwar Kalander, Mr. Hamed Al-Ali stated that the ambassador would be available tomorrow morning, this was fortunate since we only had a short ride to Sinigallia tomorrow and could spare the time. We also needed to go to a dealer to fix my rear mudguard again.

Monday, August 17, 2009

To Pisa

After a rough night's sleep due to the noise in the streets on a weekend, we headed to Pisa Italy. We knew that there would be many tunnels that we would pass through on our way so we decided to count them.

The tunnels ranged in size from 200 meters to 9 km. I started to get dizzy after 80, and had to stop to rest after 110. Luckily we only had two to go which brought the total to 112.

We reached Pisa in time and have pizza at the leaning tower of Pisa for dinner.

At the hotel Husain noticed that my rear bumper was a little shaky, and upon inspection we found that the bolt had sheared a third time. We will try to visit a dealer in Rome to fix it.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

To Megeve via Geneva

We left Dijon the same way we entered, as celebrities, with the last person asking me where I was from while waiting for the red light to turn green.

We headed to Geneva and visited the fountain, then went to a Turkish restaurant for lunch.

While I was in Paris I called Beth who runs Le Gai Soleil hotel in Megeve, a hotel we stayed in when we visited in 2006, but unfortunately she was fully booked, so she managed to get us rooms at another hotel that belonged to a friend of hers.

While in Megeve Ali and Husain visited a guy they met when they were in Megeve in 2007 that owned and rode vintage bikes.

We were also fortunate that today was the last day for the Jazz festival that is held here very year.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

To Dijon

After packing the bikes we started the day with sightseeing on the motorcycles, first we rode to the Arc de Triomphe , then to the Eiffel tower.

We then headed to Dijon , and since our tires have a bit of a flat spot from running straight highways in America, we decided to take a country road for the last 100 km also we were starting to get tired of highways.

The hotel was near the town center of Dijon and our motorcycles turned out to be part of the city attractions with many people coming up to us and asking where we were from and when we have been.