Nicolas has been robbed of his bicycle, which was his two wheel ticket home.
The Black Trek FX1, was stolen on March 4th at around 20h00 Russian market. Read his story.
Hello, I am Nicolas, 25-year-old Belgian guy who just graduated from a Master in Management last year. After I finished my studies, I wanted time for myself to broaden my mind by discovering new cultures and meeting different people instead of starting my career straight away. I think this will make me grow as a human being and that’s why I decided to go travelling around Asia.
Because I am concerned by environmental problems our world is facing, I decided to do it without taking any plane. Travelling without planes is in my opinion also a better way to get into people and be able to have a lot of discussions on the way.
So after I made sure it was possible to travel all these countries and get the visas for a Belgian, I decided to go and headed from my home through Eastern Europe to Saint-Petersburg (Russia) by bus and hitchhiking. After that, I went all the way through Russia making multiple stops on the way with the famous TransSiberian train. It was winter time and the temperature dropped at its lowest to -37°. It however felt like in movies to take the train through such dreamy white landscapes and the Russians wearing massive fur clothes.
I then went through Mongolia to Beijing, where I saw the immense wild landscapes and the nomadic life. Next step was to go down through China by train and busses, in direction of Vietnam. I saw how they prepared lunar new year and spent 36 hours standing in a Chinese train because all the people went back in there families to celebrate it.
I then went all the way through Vietnam always with busses and trains. Vietnamese were celebrating Tet and invited me so often to join them for a family dinner and drinking some beers together. This first 3 month all brought me to the second part of my travel which is travelling back to my home with a bicycle, going through South-East Asia, Myanmar, India, then trying to take a boat to Iran, Turkey, and Europe to finally get home.
I expect to take 10 month at least to go back to Belgium. Therefore, I bought a bicycle in Ho Chi Minh City and sent all my hot clothes and unnecessary stuff back to Belgium with a friend to be as light as possible while pedalling. I equipped my bicycle and everything was fitting in two panniers.
I finally went on the adventure I had always dreamed of and these first 7 days to come to Phnom Penh across the countryside of Vietnam and Cambodia where just amazing. I received more and the most beautiful smiles I ever saw. I was hosted in families as I was their son. I was offered food by so many people who were being so enthusiastic about my travel.
Everything was being amazing until my bike got stolen in Phnom Penh. This happens everywhere and I was being very careful of my bike always locking it and watching it and staying besides but sometimes this just happens because you are unlucky.
Just before I left from my hometown in Brussels, there was a Chinese guy who had done all the way from Shanghai to Belgium with his bicycle and got it stolen. He had no problems in all the other countries. His story was related in the Belgian newspapers and shared a lot on social media and we couldn’t find his bike back.
However he received enough money by crowdfunding to buy a new one. I was already attached to my new bike after ten amazing days together. I don’t ask any money to buy a new one but I would really love if you can share my story to try to find it back and eventually make the police react.
Otherwise I try to find a second hand bike of my size but since I measure 190 cm it is not so easy to find in here. Whatever happens I will find a bike and continue my dream pedalling through all these countries, with all the love and the smiles that goes with it on the way.
Nicolas can be contacted through: