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China seen through the eyes of two cyclists of the BeCycling association
Daniele Carletti’s and Simona Pergola’s anecdotes of their solidarity bike ride through China: now, they even donate bikes to those who have no means of transport available.
Three months are enough to come to know China’s different aspects. Daniele Carletti and Simona Pergola, the Italian couple that has been travelling around the world by bike since July 2014, after postponing their departure from China, decided that their next destination will be Indochina.
After going down the Tibetan mountains, they carried out bike maintenance, changing their brake pads with which they rode for as long as 17,000 kilometers. Then, they saw the China that one would expect: from Asian-style entrance doors to “Imperial-style roofs, from whitewashed buildings to pointed hats sprouting from limitless rice fields”.
Non-touristy China is that of the Mekong Valley and BeCycling describes them like this: “Sometimes wild and tropical, sometimes devastated by human activities such as the construction of dams and power plants. This is the unknown but beautiful China. Fantastic roads where to ride and extremely friendly and hospitable people!”.
In China, they reached Tro La Pass, the third pass (4900 metres high) of the path planned by BeCycling: “Climbing Tro La Pass for us was like stepping into history with an incredible feeling! It is the highest pass in Asia excluding Tibet and Kashmir”.
In smartphone connection with Daniele and Simona I asked them what was the oddest things they saw: “The owner of a fruit store running back and forth for 5-10 metres around his store. The day after, his wife was doing the gym in the store!”
They also wanted to highlight the difficulties many Chinese people have when it comes to travelling: “We saw children walking for kilometres on their way to school and ladies carrying bundles of rice on their head or heavy things on their back. There’s no need to go to Africa to see people who need means of transport; bikes, in many cases, make the difference.
Exactly for this purpose BeCycling collaborates with World bicycle relief to donate half of the funding received to give bikes to those who don’t have other means of transport. In December, there will be a new series of donations, and everyone can choose to participate with a contribution.
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