Last Post: The End of the Ride
After a long silence, I decided to write the last entry of this season. Im writing this last post exactly at the same location when I wrote the first entry on this blog… a long… long time ago. Yes, Im finally home. Im now inside my room in my homesoil in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia… and finally now, Im enjoying the heat, my aircond is still not working as usual! Im sweating while writing this! I feel so comfortable to finally sleep in my own bed in my own room. No more sleeping inside the warm sleeping bag covering myself from the deadly -30c in the Arctic. Instead, I covered myself with the thin blanket from the blood sucking mosquitos. While looking at the window, I saw exactly the same view of what Ive seen for many many years since I was a school kid, nothing much changes… except that my neighbour’s houses are getting bigger than there are less trees. Its funny to think that Im home after a long time being a nomad, yet sometimes I do close my eyes, take a deep breath and start to imagine that Im breathing the fresh air in the wild mountains of the Arctic. My mind is still there somewhere in the northern mountains. Norwegian landscapes are magical, the Norwegian fjords are legendary and the snow-capped mountains look really grand and when the northern lights show herself, dancing in the sky under the stars… it feels like you are in a huge Hollywood movie set in some Disney fantasy movies. Yet I still feel a bit of regret because I don’t have enough time to cover the whole length of Norway. I only rode almost half of Norway. I missed all the grand superlong fjords downsouth of Norway. But still, I feel so lucky to be able to get the best experience staying 88 days in the Scandinavia peninsula.
My ride ended in Trondheim of Norway. I had to cut short my ride in Norway because of visa restriction. I flew out of Europe 2 days before my 3 months visa expired. The last part of my ride, I wasn’t so lucky with the weather. It was cloudy and raining most of the time, covering the incredible view of the magnificent Norwegian fjords in the north. And the wind keeps on blowing against me. I felt less energetic due to less motivation, since I knew that Im gonna end my ride halfway in Norway. But the best part of my ride in Norway is actually the people around me. I was given the best hospitality from its people. I consider myself really lucky… and my crazy idea riding bicycle alone in the Arctic region in the middle of winter was really a good choice! On the road, I was the only cyclist who braved the harsh cold Arctic winter which makes me special to the locals. People were waving at me along the road and I even get a free ferry ride from Andalsvagen to Horn while I was riding towards the end point to Trondheim. I never paid full price for accommodation in Norway. Its either I get a very good discount or most of the time, I get to stay in hotel or cabin for free. Upon reaching Trondheim from Steinkjer, I received an email of invitation from our Indonesian sister who got my contact from one of my silent blog reader to stay in her small village up in the mountains near Hommelvik. So I took the opportunity since its very rare to meet our brothers or sisters from Indonesia in the middle of nowhere in Norway! And when I was there for 2 days, I got to meet even more locals who live in the small village in the mountain and get to share the stories of my journey with them. And basically I ended my cycling journey there since it was only some 45km towards Trondheim and the road was downhill all the way to end my journey in Trondheim.
When I reached Trondheim, I was greeted by my Malaysian friend who is on a vacation there. It feels really good to finally meet another Malaysian after for so long. I spent a few days there in my friend’s house, Erik, a very nice and friendly guy and the only Norwegian man who speaks Malaysian-style English hehe. After spending a few days there in Trondheim, I then took a train back to Sweden, to Uppsala then to Bjorklinge and stay a day there with Fredrik and family. It feels like Im in a totally a different world, it’s the same place but with totally a different look. The last time I left Bjorklinge was in the middle of February, which is in the middle of winter. The snow was everywhere and thick and it was really really cold. But when I got back there, it was totally different, I can enjoy walking barefooted on the grass and its so green and brown, compared to a few months ago when it was white and blue. No more wearing layers after layers, just a thin cotton shirt will do.
Surprising, on my 3 months traveling here around Scandinavia, I spent less than I ever expected. This is the most expensive region to travel in the world and Norway being one of the most expensive country in the world to live. But somehow, for the whole 3 months… I managed to spend less money than a normal tourist would spend a week traveling here. And this is possible because most of the people that I met along my way didn’t treat me like a tourist… but they treated me like a family, like their own brother or son! I am sooo glad that I crossed path with these people while I was biking in the Scandinavia. Some of them let me to sleep in their home, some let me to stay in their hotel for free or very good discount, some cook delicious food for me, some bought me clothes, food or a coffee, some made me smile and laugh, I met so many of good people. Before I came… we were complete strangers, but we met, learn how to pronounce each other’s name and became a family. We will definitely keep in touch, as I will never let the good ones go away easily in my life :) And I learn a lot from these people.
This journey really taught me sooo many things. It has changed me a lot! I started to learn on how to appreciate things… everything…. even the bad ones. Traveling, living my life on the road has taught me to embrace everything that comes to me, the good luck and the bad. I realized we usually forget to appreciate things that we get easily and often. In this journey, I appreciate so deeply everytime I had the chance to take shower, everytime I get the chance to sleep in a proper bed under a roof or get to eat good food… and I even appreciate the most basic thing in this life, breathing normally. It happened a few times while I was camping outside in the forest at some -20c or -30c, where I couldn’t even breath normally since my nose were filled with ice! My nose were so painful and I was struggling to breath through my mouth instead. And as we all know… breathing through our mouth for a long time, it will make our mouth feels so dry. And when its dry under extreme cold condition, it really hurts. So Ive been through the situation where I was struggling even to breath. Now I really appreciate it whenever I can breath normally again. Sometimes I even close my eyes for a moment while taking shower, thanking the creator of the universe for letting me to enjoy this very moment right here, exactly the place I should be and right now, enjoying every single drop of water that run through my skin.
Living on a bicycle also has taught me to be less materialistic. I know that if I buy more things, I will suffer more since I will be carrying heavier load on my bicycle. I just need to live simple. The less I carry, the easier I can cycle… So its actually better for me to possess less things. After a while I realized that I don’t actually need so many things to live. I realized if we want to feel rich, we don’t need to possess so many materialistic things, but instead to be grateful… and thankful. Feeling rich is more like a state of mind really. I don’t know how to put everything that I learned through my journey into words, nobody will understand. Some things, can only be taught by experience, not through reading or listening. Its just not enough… So sometimes we really have to go out there and experience it firsthand. That’s all for this season. Thank you so much for reading. I hope some of you guys will get inspired, learn a thing or two or even at least enjoy reading and looking at the pictures. May peace be upon all of you… The End.
hope to see u in KL!
Alhamdulillah. You’ve completed the journey this time around.
How i wish i can meet you up too in KL. Same as Khairul. :D
a very good reflection on life after been through a long journey.
perrghh…dah sampai Malaysia..!!.
tahniah…walupun baca dalam post agak regrets tak sempat pusing satu norway..huhuhu.
‘ Living on a bicycle also has taught me to be less materialistic. I know that if I buy more things, I will suffer more since I will be carrying heavier load on my bicycle. I just need to live simple…………………………………………….. enjoy reading and looking at the pictures. May peace be upon all of you ‘
paragraph terakhir tu bermakna sungguh.. :)
bro kemah berghaus tu ada simpan lagi tak? hehehe
whats next bro? riding in Kilimanjaro region not yet bro
rasa terbakar plak.huhuh
thx all for the comments!
Khairul + Chroma – of course bro no problem. aku takde kene frostbite.. so semua jari2 aku still working normally. so boleh kita ratah ayam goreng ramai2 :)
Murthada – thx bro!
Zainulariffin – ada ada.. tapi kene tunggu sket.. tent tu still kat scotland. nanti aku paksa member aku tolong bawakkan balik tent tu :)
Tapir – not sure.. but for now… aku nak jogging keliling rumah aku dulu :D
ada? caya la.heeeeeeeee
oit nak ratah ayam ajak aku sekali.. huhu
double chin!!! post a better pix of erik plzzz XD
WHAT A BEAUTIFUL FINALE POST!!! Congrats Hariz….u r a livin legend!!! Cant wait to meet u very soon :)
BTW, the comparison winter vs spring pics are awesome…Allahuakbar!!!
wah …kak nita masuk metro….manegambo lagi…bagi la link…hehehehehe
Welcome home bro! What a wonderful journey. Can’t wait for your documentary!
balik kerumah dengan sempurna tanpa frostbite..
bole ratah ayam goreng puas2 haha :)
Alhamdulilah. Tahniah. Ini Untie Ngasobah. Masa muda saya juga suka kembara. Tetapi tidak punya keberanian seperti ini. Sekarang sudah umur senja tapi masih suka mendengar cerita orang-orang mengembara. Sujud Syukur. Allah telah mengurnia suatu yang amat hebat. Salam.
Please write a book on your travel experiences. There are very interesting and doubt there will be another to dare your path of adventure. CHEERS!
tak silap zahariz baru 3~4 tahun buat project ni..dalam video latest tu total 12 tahun, banyak tempat die nak pegi…haiisshhh..tak sabo tunggu post2 terbaru..
ada plan p mexico ke aafganistan ke? cuba ke? kayuh tepi ladang marijuana tuh…hehehhe
till another great adventure Tok Dalang,,,
Alhamdulillah. Glad to hear you’re home, safe & sound.
Ah, I found u who took the road less travelled. May u be an inspiration to those who are trying to find themselves from street demo.
Zahariz, reading and admiring all your photos in snow plus the “peti sejuk” temperatures you had endured. I am glad that Malaysia have another crazyguyonbike like you.
I totally understand what you mean by living simple. I wish I had a chance like to to cycle+backpack to experience life. Ya, sometimes when we are too busy chasing life, we tend to forget the meaning of life.
You courage and inspiration should be my role model!
thank you for all the comments guys.
Eleanor Cheah – thank you. yes its true. but i think its not necessary for all of us to cycle/backpack to find the true meaning of life. i think once we start leaving our routine life at least for a while, doing something totally different, it will help us to look at life at different point of view. To me, the simpler the better. The more we possess, the greater the fear of losing them… We dont actually own anything in this world.. all is temporary and we are actually just borrowing it for a while… that is of course just my opinion…
Hai Zahariz . good job you ;)
hey vampire… thank you :)
Keep on reading your wordpress ;)
My name is Hamad I really don’t know how to start but I’ve been looking for you, we don’t know each other but I need some guidance from you to start my own journey, I’ve always wanted to travel by my own but didn’t know how to start, the moon the stars the northernlights the night sky have always been my perfect hideaway and that’s why I’ve been planning for almost a year to go to Norway, I feel like I’m stuck in this modern life dealing with people wearing the same mask !
Please contact me :
Email : H.email@example.com
Instagram : @hmd8
P.S : I was struggling to find the proper words to describe how I felt about ur story :/
salam bro…. atan from orange cycle pj….. lama tak jengah sini…. nice foto u got… dengki nya aku… haahhaa anyway… tak terlambat lagi kot nak ucap selamat hari raya to u bro….
You sir, are a badass! I salute you! I cycled through Southeast Asia in 2010 and got to experience the hospitality of the Malaysian people, but riding in Norrland during winter? Crazy! I live in southern Sweden and have never even been in the northern half. Your story inspires me and now I am considering a ride through my country during winter! Keep travelling and experiencing!
Its awsome! Bro memang hebat..penulisan, foto dan short film yg dihasilkan mmg memberi inspirasi kepada ramai orang…travel is nice..but travel using bicycle is awsome!
Subahallah.. cantik sungguh gambar2 dari bro.. sy sgt bangga dgn bro sbb travel hanya menggunakan basikal sahaja.. semoga apa yang bro impikan akan tercapai.. insyallah..
If you do not mind me asking, how much in total did you spend for your whole trip including Iceland, Scotland and Norway?