This picture shows Tanija, Natasha and Valija from Magazin Kashtan in the village of Kilija, Ukraine. Kilija comes up along the Danube River between Izmail and Odessa, a popular week-long cycle touring route during Spring and Summer.
Magazin Kashtan was where one of my shortest and most intense cycle touring encounters has happened. I walked in just to get some bread, but as it’s nearly always the case, that’s never the whole story. They seemed especially glad to see, maybe because i came from so far (Brazil). I believe that can be seen in their smiles on the photo.
But despite their contagious joy, this encounter was also a tough reminder that we’re constantly departing on a cycle tour — perhaps in life in general? This was one of the countless occasions in which i broke into tears upon leaving them behind — “am i ever going to see them again!?”
This will likely not quite apply to the vast majority of my readers — but on the off chance that you’re doing the Izmail–Odessa ride, please swing by Magazin Kashtan on your way through Kilija — do you food shopping there, and tell the ladies that Mika, cycle touring guy from Brazil, says ‘hi’ 🙂
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