Memo to me: Don’t use a Swiss knife with a foldable blade (and no mechanical catch) for drilling holes into the sturdy fabric of a soft luggage bag. While doing this the day before to repair the bag, I put too much pressure on the knife to get a hole in it. Due to a bad move while drilling, the knife collapsed while my hand was tightly closed around it’s handle. So my right index finger got cut between the collapsing blade and the handle. Instantly I’ve stretched quick the instantly heavily bleeding finger above my head. In this position I ran to the motorcycle for the first aid kit. With it, some additional plasters from the luggage and some electrical tape I made a working pressure bandage for the incoming night …

On the sixth day of the Project-Carpathian-Balkan-Tour Чернотa and I rode from our camping place in a sunflower field in north-western Bulgaria near the village Knezha southwards to the Balkan Mountains. The plan was to visit there a famous monument of Bulgaria’s communist era. After that we followed the Balkan Mountains westwards, passed the city Sofia and went straight into Macedonia. You see the red line on the map? This was the intended route this day with a nice off road part through the Balkan Mountains (especially the area in Sofia’s north eastern surrounding), but because of my wounded finger I was forced to skip that part and take the alternative route marked in green on the map to Macedonia. After 580km this day we built up the camp near the village Vetunica in Macedonia.

throbthrobthrob … .
The whole last night the wound on my right index finger was pumping. I’ve often cut myself in a finger or the hand due to accident before, but this time it was surely the worst wound I’ve ever had. In the last night i changed the pressure bandage for one time. The bleeding stopped and in the morning the finger looked like shown above. I was afraid to put of the plaster. So I put again some electronic tape around it which hold the plaster on its position and also compressed the cut. I also decided to ride this day without the right glove to keep the plaster on its position. After that I started into the day, stowed the camping gear and off we went. ​

We followed some boring straight roads along Bulgaria’s plains.

After some foggy woods …

we reached the City Севлиево (“Sevlievo”). There … ​

we lurked a bit around, searching for some …

interesting remnants of the communist area. I really like the charm of …

Eastern-bloc cities. While leaving the city … ​

we passed this old eastern style crane. After that we reached … ​

the first hills at the foot of the Balkan Mountain massif.

There I took the chance after 5 days of traveling to wash my clothes here at this little spring. Afterwards I had a brake and a real nice chat with a lorry driver which also stopped here for a rest. At the top of … ​

the Shipka Pass this stone monument was built in memorial to a big battle here in the Russo-Turkish war which happened in the second half of the 19th century. For Bulgarians and their national pride this is an important monument cause many Bulgarian volunteers fought together in this fight. We passed this monument and went on further along the street over the Shipka Pass. We now arrived at another famous building and one of our chief objects on this journey. On top of …

the Budzludzha Mountain lies the same named monument. The view was surreal. The main building of this former communist meeting point looks like a space ship out of a sci-fi movies made in the 70tys. The soviet star on top of the side building is bigger than that one which is mounted on the Kremlin! Also the two torches in the foreground are impressive. Just have a look at how small the people are compared to it! O_O
With my black beauty …

I climbed the hill up to the monument. ​

From the main square in front of it the surrealism of this building impressed me still more. At the first glance it was obvious … ​

that it is forbidden to enter that building. But that didn’t stop us from being curious and taking pictures. I really like the right graffiti on that picture which says “enjoy Communism” in the Coca Cola font-style. The front doors have been shut welded. I knew that there has to be an entrance, so I took a look around the building. On its backside …

I met this adventurer. His name was Seth, and he was travelling from Great Britain to China on a bicycle! Wow! After a short talk he climbed the wall, searching for an entrance into the main building. He didn’t find one on that roof. So we made up a little expedition team. Our search for an entrance went on … ​

and we finally found a hole which led into the cellar. We climbed into the basement. Through a few dark, flooded and insect infested corridors we went up the levels of the building and finally stood at the steps to the …

​main hall.

​The dimensions are gigantic and the …


flair of the former communist area is nearly touchable. Sadly the building was in a very bad shape. The roof has many holes in it and vandalism did the rest. All pictures at the main hall wall have been made out of …

small handmade mosaic stones with around 2x2cm or 0,8×0,8 inches. That’s insane! ​

I was happy that I made this visit here in 2017 due to the bad shape of the building.

Probably it won’t last many years longer. While strolling around a bit this impression grew. Here on the following website you will find some pictures how Budzludzha was built and what it looked liked in the good old days of the communist party: –> CLICK <–

After about an hour in this great lost place we left the building like we came into it: through the old boiler room in the basement. ​

Seth and I made a last picture about us and our both vehicles in front of that great building. At this point thanks again to Seth for the nice common expedition into the past and sharing his great pictures with me. If you are interested in Seth’s adventures, have a look to www.thewheelworld.blog (his site isn’t online anymore 🙁 ).

After the climbing actions in Budzluzha my finger was hurting a lot, so …

I took some easy trails along the southern bottom of the Bulgarian Mountains in direction west. The former plan was to ride westwards along within the hilly Balkan Mountains, but due to my wounded finger I had to step back a bit and avoided the rough terrain this day. ​

The paper plate got worse, so I took the chance and made out of … ​

a polystyrene fish box, which was lying aside the street, a new one. ​

Along some real good roads we went on straight in the direction of Macedonia. ​

Here at this monument built for Vasil Levski, a famous Bulgarian national hero, Чернотa and I made a short stop and used the opportunity to fill up our water reserves at spring located there close by.

Along endless plains we finally reached Macedonia. There … ​

another classy eastern bloc settlement welcomed us. ​

In the late afternoon Чернотa and I bought some food at a local supermarket and … ​

found finally this big mowed field. Here I built up the shelter for the incoming night. ​

After that I sizzled 3 pieces of different meat, a sweet pepper and some mushrooms in the pan. While the food was roasting … ​

I had a look to my wounded finger. Due to the electric tape, which I used for compressing the wound along the whole day the skin was swollen up around the wound. So I cleaned the wound again and let it dry during the night.

Finally the meat was nicely roasted. I enjoyed … ​

the quiet evening mood while having three pieces of meat and a beer aside. One piece of them was lamb meat, which I didn´t like that much, but although I ate it. A big slug of beer washed away the bad “sheepy” taste and made it edible. After washing and stowing the cooking equipment I read on in my sci-fi e-book and watched … ​

the dimming day light. Soon it was dark, far in the distance flashes of lightning began to appear. It was time to go to sleep …

Total distance on this adventurous day: 580km