Europe

Gobstop ’til You Get Enough – A Night in Mykolaiv (July 31-August 1)

Our car repairs in Odessa were done by early evening and we had a couple of hours of daylight to finally make it to Mykolaiv. We were headed there to meet up with Sergei Pavlyshko, a musical engineer with the dance-music collective DuraSound. It wasn’t until we found him that we learned what our delays […]


Learning Protocol in Ukraine (July 30-31, 2011)

We left Eric Hamilton’s place in Galati before seven on the morning of July 30 and headed for our first major border.  We were racing to meet up with the fourth member of our crew.  She was supposed to arrive in Odessa on the 28th, and we had gone from planning to pick her up […]


Singin’ in the Ukraine

Singin' in the Ukraine

This hour of tunes was culled from over 1000 songs we picked up on CDR in Ukraine. The exception is track 1, which we got from Far From Moscow, a fantastic catalog of artists from Ukraine, Russia, Belarus and the Baltics.  You’ll notice as well that, because the Cyrillic track information sometimes didn’t upload properly […]


Desperately Seeking Ukraine (But Finding a Very Hospitable Alternative) – July 29, 2011

We are running late.  Our fourth teammate arrived in Odessa yesterday, and we are desperately trying to get to her by tonight. We are driving to Galati, the last major city on the Romanian side of the border. The traffic comes to a total standstill.  We wait with a group of 3 other Rally cars […]


Party! Vama Veche! (July 28, 2011)

View Vama Veche in a larger map Vama Veche is a tiny little beach town on the Black Sea, nestled in the southeast corner of Romania, near the Bulgarian border. If I were 20 years old, traveling around Europe, I would think this was the greatest place on earth. In my 30s, I still think […]


“the best road…in the world” (July 28, 2011)

We made a quick stop in Sibiu, the medieval Transylvanian city that was named the European Capital for Culture in 2007. We enjoyed a late meal at the well-known local restaurant Crama Sibiul Vechi, and lingered a while to listen to the fantastic house band. The next morning, we had a quick wander around the […]


Oh, how they drive (July 27, 2011)

I had read so many awful things about driving in Romania. Google it. You’ll read all about the “worst roads in Europe” and the “aggressive, suicidal drivers.” From the moment we drove in from Hungary, I was expecting to be dodging man-sized potholes and turning blind corners to cars careening head on towards me. Apparently […]


First official day of the Rally and lessons in time expectations (July 26, 2011)

First official day of the Rally and lessons in time expectations (July 26, 2011)

View Larger Map We followed an ambulance driven by the Paramongols, a crew of 5 friendly and helpful Romanians (the first Romanian team on the Rally, in fact), who were heading home following the Czech Out party to prepare for a big beach party they had organized for the Rally cars heading in that direction […]


The Czech Out Party (July 25, 2011)

The Czech Out Party (July 25, 2011)

Upon entering the old Klenova castle, site of the epic and infamous Czech Out Party, the visitor is greeted with a choice upon entering the gates: going along either a long pathway to the building’s upper level or taking two steps up to a grass courtyard where there were two tents set up for the […]


European Launch of the 2011 Mongol Rally (July 25, 2011)

European Launch of the 2011 Mongol Rally (July 25, 2011)

We came upon a hill dotted with cars and ambulances.  We pulled in, registered, set up our tents, and drank a couple from twelve pack of Brand we bought way back in Amsterdam.  Like legends of the enchanted countryside we figured out how to strap two tires and the ever-cumbersome duffel onto the top of […]


Getting to the Czechout Party (July 25, 2011)

Getting to the Czechout Party (July 25, 2011)

We left Munich on Monday morning after spending a wonderful Sunday evening there with a family gracious enough to both sponsor our Kickstarter project and put us up in their very comfortable apartment because we got lost looking for our campground.  They readied us for that day’s journey with a hearty breakfast of white veal […]


On the road from Amsterdam (July 24, 2011)

On the road from Amsterdam (July 24, 2011)

It is Sunday, almost 10:00 a.m., and we are driving from Vliegenbos, a campground across the Het Ij (the big canal) from Amsterdam Central Station, in the direction of Munich. James and I picked up Kara at Schiphol Airport around 6 p.m. yesterday and brought her back to the tents we’d set up when we […]


updates from the road

It is even more challenging than we expected to sit down at the computer with an internet connection while on the road. But we are able to update from our phone to the following: http://theunconfinednomads.com/ Twitter: @silkroadnstereo Facebook: Silk Road in Stereo But watch this space! Good things are coming… Blog this! Bookmark on Delicious […]


Rally begins today

Rally begins today

The Mongol Rally officially begins today in Goodwood, UK.  While we’ll be skipping this first launch, we’ll meet up with all the teams at Klenova Castle in the Czech Republic on Monday.  This weekend our journey begins in Amsterdam, then through Germany and onward to the Czech Out party.   Our car is stocked hopefully with […]


Goldie, safe and sound

I picked up our little gold Hyundai Accent at the docks in Zeebrugge this afternoon, none the worse for wear after a month on a boat.  After so many weeks of stress and slow-moving bureaucracy, easy peasy.   I think Starship said it best.  Sing it, friends: Let em say were crazy, I don’t care […]


Recording practice at Kernave Archaeological Reserve, Lithuania

Recording practice at Kernave Archaeological Reserve, Lithuania

I’m in the Baltics right now teaching at SOIMA 2011: Safeguarding Sound and Image Collections. Today we made the 4 hour journey by bus from Riga, Latvia, to Vilnius, Lithuania, and along the way had the pleasure of stopping by the Kernave Archaeological Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Their description nicely sums it up: […]


The easy part

The easy part

I was the first to leave our cozy Brooklyn neighborhood on Wednesday.  On my way out of Newark I stopped at duty free to pick up a couple of cartons of good old Marlboro reds.  They’ll apparently save us all kinds of hard cash when we use them to bribe various corrupt officials.  70 bucks […]