WorldRider: 81 Countries & Counting…The Journey Continues....

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by worldrider, Jul 21, 2005.

  1. Shooby

    Shooby Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,307
    Location:
    San Diego
  2. KTM265

    KTM265 Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2005
    Oddometer:
    1,043
    Location:
    Iowa
    Hell ya buddy.... Been a while since we talked. Looking forward to your shows...
  3. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,245
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    TIME TO REBOOT.
    Even though this thread seems to have been stale due to lack of feeding, attention, and commitment, I haven't stopped riding—that is, until these life and times of Corona.

    Since my book "FORKS: A Quest for Culture, Cuisine, and Connection," I've continued to travel the world—currently logging more than 100,000 miles through 81 countries. As I sit in a quarantine-lock-down mode in San Diego, my original BMW F650GS Dakar is locked down in a garage in Athens, Greece. I left it there last October when I returned to the USA after over four months of travel last summer and fall.

    With airline tickets in hand, my plan was to return to Greece in June and head east again, riding through the 'Stans to Mongolia and beyond. When can truly do that? I hope soon. I'm waiting and my bike is too.

    To satiate my wanderlust and attempt to cure my cabin fever, I started a new project. A weekly Livestream called "Journeys Webcast: Adventure and Discovery in the Time of Corona and Beyond." I connect with friends and fellow kindred spirits all over the world to talk about travel, motorcycles, the future, and sure a little food and wine is thrown in for color. I'm also continuing to write and produce video content from hundreds of hours of footage. All of this on my YouTube Channel.

    For now, I'm going to reboot and feed this thread with these webcasts, trip report writings, and other videos that document my ongoing quest to ride through every country in the world. So tune in, drop me a note in this thread, and let's wander through this pandemic with a smile and a laugh—share stories, dreams, ideas, and inspiration.

    Here is the replay of my first Journeys Webcast with fellow ADVrider Ronnie Borrageiro—100 Countries. 100,000 miles and an Eat, Pray, Love story an ADVrider will love. Enjoy! There are many others with other riders, musicians, entrepreneurs, chefs, and ordinary people doing extraordinary things. I'll keep this thread going and appreciate you tuning in now and again!

    DC950 and DaleE like this.
  4. DC950

    DC950 Microadventurer

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    Mar 1, 2004
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    Seattle and Las Cruces, NM
    cool. I was thinking of you and this thread last week but had no idea how to find it.
  5. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,245
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    Thanks DC950! Yeah, it got buried. But I'll keep feeding it for the time being with my long overdue writings from many trips! Cheers!
  6. worldrider

    worldrider Adventure & Discovery Around The World

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    1,245
    Location:
    Locked Down. Me: Leucadia, CA - Bike: Greece
    The Chasing China Challenge

    A few years ago a television producer and team from Vancouver contracted me to shoot a television show about motorcycling "Border to Border" in China. The next batch of posts on the WorldRider ride report thread here will cover that "journey." To be sure, this journey, like all adventures, ended up quite the challenge as you'll read. After China, we'll go to Iceland — and beyond. In between, I'll post links to some great podcasts, too. Thanks for tuning in!

    Not long ago China, comfortable hiding behind its wall of isolation, for the most part, closed itself to foreign visitors—and most everything else. In 1949, Mao Zedong, after conquering Chiang Kai-shek in the Chinese Civil War, formed the People's Republic of China. In the process of socializing the country, foreign investors were kicked out and landowners were forced to redistribute land for communal use by peasants and farmers, yet land ownership was prohibited.

    China began to slowly open up in the 1970s when a number of events brought about evolutionary changes, from the historic visit of US President Nixon to the formal end of the cultural revolution and the death of Mao, China ushered in economic reform policies including the ability of local provinces and municipalities to invest in industry and manufacturing. These reforms paved the path to the further opening of China and the explosive growth that transformed China into the country I'll be exploring soon.

    Soon? I hope so. Though I'm learning that China as open as China has become since Mao, it's still may not be open enough to let me bring in my bike.

    We crated and shipped my motorcycle "Doc" in early April and it arrived in the port of Ningbo (south of Shanghai) on April 27, 2015. Since we shipped the bike QE Productions personnel have struggled with Chinese customs officials and clearing agents to get Doc released. With nearly a month of negotiations behind us, it appears China is open to my visit, but is less open to the temporary visit of my motorcycle.

    There is no question that the Chinese require visitors to follow certain procedures, processes, and formalities; just as any other country I've brought my motorcycle. However, in China, the reasons that Doc hasn't been released to the QE Productions office in Ningbo keep changing. First, we were told that it could not be released until I secured a proper Chinese driver's license. International Drivers Licenses are not recognized there. So, I will take a test, in Chinese, upon my arrival in China next week. Next, we were told that the vehicle is too old. At barely ten years old, our executive producer, Randolph Paul Kelman, sighs in disbelief at the hypocrisy of the situation as he looks out the window of his office where he sees old motorcycles and cars zip by every day—many which should have been taken off the road twenty years earlier.

    Then customs officials informed us that the bike should have been inspected before shipping to China, yet it is unclear as to where in California I could find a certified inspector

    I contacted my friends at BMW North America who connected us with BMW corporate officials from both Germany and China. BMW China worked through no less than three clearing agents who all failed to get authorization to release "Doc" from the port, including a plan to reroute the bike to Yunnan province or Vietnam, and temporarily import the bike from there. This will not work.

    A local Israeli ex-pat who owns a Ducati in China found a possible solution that would require us to refuse the shipment at the port and re-route it to Hong Kong where a Chinese company would register and secure the necessary paperwork and permits—at significant cost. Sounds good. So just as we were ready to the pull the trigger and choose this option, we were informed that it would take 35 days to get the bike to Hong Kong (no more than a few hours away by ship), and it would take another 10 days to process and get the bike back to mainland China.

    Time is money. And in movie and television production, time is exponentially money. At this point, we're burning it and not getting anywhere.


    We are exploring the possibility of borrowing a bike from BMW China, renting a Chinese dual-sport motorcycle (Jialing JH600), or finding a preowned BMW dual-sport that is already legally imported into the country.

    So the adventure in China has already started and I'm still sitting in North America.

    Hanging in Vancouver, British Columbia

    IMG_8692-1.jpg



    IMG_1694.jpg IMG_1407.jpg My time in Vancouver has been somewhat productive, however, enjoying great food with the family of co-director and producer Panayioti Yannitsos, cooking Ethiopian food using a recipe from my book "FORKS—A Quest for Culture, Cuisine, and Connection" and testing production and motorcycle equipment from the Phantom drone, to SENA communications equipment, and my new custom-molded in-ear Westone ES60 earbuds.

    But I'd rather be in China—riding and shooting this new television show.

    I will. Soon. Stay tuned.
    DaleE likes this.