Idilevo, Bulgaria - July 14, 2010
Still in Idilevo, but will probably leave tomorrow. The meeting was quite good and met a lot of folks with similar interests of course. And as it always is, I have the oldest bike in the group.
I met a chap from Germany, Neils, and we decided to travel together for a while. We headed out Monday, but only got an hour or so down the road when the rain ahead looked so intense, we decided to high-tail it back and wait a day. I had left my rain liner to my jacket back in camp anyway and so it worked out well. Besides, Neils and I had an opportunity to sit with the maps, and he was able to contact some friends in Athens, and so we were both looking forward to traveling together.
We started out yesterday morning... much better weather and got to about the same place we had gotten to the day before, when I, who happened to be in the lead, decided to head off towards some Roman ruins we had ridden past the day before. I turned left and just went a ways down the side road and stopped to wait for Neils. I was watching in the mirror and just as he came into view out on the main road, he disappeared in a white blur, then I heard the squeal of brakes, a dull thud and broken glass. As he was turning left, he was hit from behind by a truck doing between 100 and 120k in a 60k zone. The driver just hadn't seen him. I threw my stuff off and ran back to the road expecting him to be dead, but amazingly by that time, he was standing next to his crunched bike. He had been thrown backwards into the truck windshield, then launched forward ahead of the truck... but wearing all his gear, was only a little sore.
Shutting Off the Fuel
Cops came and all that, and some friends here that hosted the meeting came out and took him to the hospital for a check. I guess everything is fine. Unbelievable.
Truck Didn't Do So Well Either
But today he has no bike. He is now dealing with insurance companies and all that. I've waited here an extra day to see if he might be able to rent something but it doesn't look like it. So I guess I will be off on my own again tomorrow.
Plans are back to crossing northern Greece, then ferry to Italy. Not sure where to go from there, although Neils has extended an invitation to come visit him in northern Germany. Will see how the route works out.
Anyway... just wanted to let everyone know where I was and why I have been here so long. Nice place to stay though. "Moto Camp" is run by Doug Wothke a self-proclaimed "different kind of red-neck" from Alabama who rode a 1948 Indian around the world a few years ago and his girlfriend Poly from here in Bulgaria. She is a great hostess and a great cook as well. She also has been totally invaluable in dealing with the police, insurance companies and whatever else relate to this latest incident.