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Click on URL to see the photo set:
http://www.chinahush.com/2010/02/21/bei ... in-berlin/
Beijing guys hitch-hike all the way to visit oneâ€™s girlfriend in Berlin
February 21st, 2010 by Annie Lee | Posted in Life Style, News | 32 Comments Â» From xinhuanet:
Two Beijing guys spent 3 and a half months hitch-hiking over 16,000 km across 13 countries to see one of the guyâ€™s girl friend in Berlin, Germany. Altogether they took 88 hitch rides, including tricycle, tractor and carriage. Their journey was dubbed â€œthe most romantic hitch-hike in historyâ€ by netizens.
Liu Chang and Gu Yue are both born in 70s, they were first seen standing in the mist of Hou Hai thumbing for rides on June 8th last year. Carrying super heavy packs, they convinced the visa officers of 12 countries by the purpose of â€œbackpacking travelâ€. Getting all visas done, they hit the road with cashes, credit cards, sleeping bags, laptop, camera and a few clothes.
The most difficult ride is actually in China from Beijing to Hebei, according to Liu Chang who recalled that they waited in vain for over an hour in Hou Hai, nobody would stop to take them. Finally they got help from one driver who took them to the entrance of the highway leading to Hebei, where they continued to wait despite the rain storm. They were asked to leave by some road maintenance workers, one of whom thoughtfully said: â€œnot many cars go to Berlin from here.â€
Hitch-hiking is far more difficult than they imagine. From Beijing to Berlin, these two swarthy, ragged Chinese guys with half long hair were turned down by 1000-some drivers. It happened a lot of times when they had to wait hours before getting a hitch, the longest one they waited for 2 days at road side.
â€œCountries like Uzbekistan, Kirghizstan donâ€™t have the custom of hitch-hiking, and we donâ€™t speak their language.â€ Said Gu Yue, who settled this by having someone written a few cards in Russian, saying â€œwe need to hitch ride to Germany from Chinaâ€ â€œCould you give us a ride?â€ â€œExcuse us, we donâ€™t have money for you but weâ€™ve got cigarette and smilesâ€ â€¦
The more they hitch, the more they love it, according to Liu Chang, and meeting so many different people is the biggest reward: a Mr. Qiao, who is delivering goods from Hebei to Shanxi, decided to keep driving for 20 years in order to build houses for his two sons; a petrol truck driver in Xinjiang liked to take every hitch-hiker to kill the loneliness of the long journey; a financial officer who got fired in the financial crisis took them to Czech the day after he landed a new job; a easy-going CEO who drove a limo; a drunk driver in Georgia who played â€œSpeedâ€ liveâ€¦
The funniest experience happened in northern Iraq, where they got on a tractor and rode for 2 or 3 km before the driver switched into a smoky village. They realized that the tractor was rushing all the way to help put out the fire, and they were brought there along. When the fire was under control the two become the scene, and treated with dinner at an Iraqi home.
Three and a half month later, they finally reached Berlin, where lived Gu Yueâ€™s girl friend Ika (dubbed).
â€œI traveled in the direction of sunset for the last 3 months, because I know Berlin is where the sun sets, and that is where my Ika lives.â€ Said Gu Yue.
Ika, on the other hand said: â€œnext time you want to see me, take the plane.â€
Their journey was tagged â€œMost romantic hitch-hiking in historyâ€ â€œBest Valentine giftâ€ by netizens. At the moment, Gu Yuan and Ika are on vacation in Thailand, celebrating their Spring Festival.
For more, watch the â€œXing Zheâ€ program aired 22:30 in Travel Channel.
Video episodes of their travels: (in China they use youku.com and not youtube.com)
http://www.youku.com/playlist_show/id_4 ... age_2.html
Comments from a blogger:
Wang Er says:
2010/02/24 at 7:14 pm
It would be better to include a short bio of the two travelers. No they are not some random guys but professional:
Gu Yue was working in the financial department in GE before quitting from the job to start the journey, and Liu Chang is a professional documentary director working with Discovery Network Asia. They were guest writers/commenters to several travel magazines and TV programs.
Gu holds an American passport (he was living in US from 11-24 years old) and Liu has a Chinese passport.
They have a Chinese blog on sina.com which documented some fantastic stories and pictures along the journey (and other details such as cost and visa processing):
and trip on Google map:
Now that's what I call real adventure. I wonder, though, considering their professional backgrounds, if they could have easily bailed themselves out anytime. Still, so few people are daring enough todo this kind of thing these days, in this modern fast paced society There was a time, when this sort of thing was simply the norm. (not so much the hitch but the hiking it, spending months, wherever you wanted to go)
“b***y is so strong that there are dudes willing to blow themselves up for the highly unlikely possibility of b***y in another dimension." -- Joe Rogan
Why did they do that? Why didn't they just take a plane or train?
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I'm 6'3" and 275 so imagine me trying to hitch a ride. Oh yeah, and in America, I'm looked at as Black even though I'm Brasileiro-Americano. So yeah, I would f**k around and find myself taking 9 months just to walk from NYC to L.A.
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