(Georgia) A small country next to Black Sea

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[15/09/08~30 (D+1491)]
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I arrived the border before the dark. I was surprised because the immigration was quite big. Even people had to check their luggage through x-ray. I was a bit nervous because of my drone. But kind immigration’s worker made exception that he just let me pass without checking. Actually when I brought it from Paris to Istanbul, there was no any problem at Paris at the airport. However, the drone made me nervous sometimes on this kind of situation.

After crossing the border, suddenly scenery was changed that girl’s clothes were way much shorter than in Turkey. Above all, the beer was cheaper. I hardly drank beer in Turkey, because it was expensive. But now I was free to drink beer again.

 

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Since Georgia, suddenly there were many vacation’s towns that many hotels were along the sea. It was totally different atmosphere compared to Turkey’s Black Sea. I booked one guest house in a small town though online before, but it was weird place at the end.

After a few days, I started cycling in Georgia. I saw two guys on one motor cycle. They greeted at me first. They were from Ukraine. They told me they were going around Black Sea. I met other people like it a few times more. It looked like the people who lived next to Black Sea loved to go around Black Sea.

My bicycle was still awesome the next to a big motor cycle.

 

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The most famous touristic place along the sea was Batumi. But recently I had spent too much money that I was sure I would spend much money again if I stayed in Batumi. So, I decided to avoid the biggest touristic spot. But the way going out of the city was too crowd. The building looked like built it 1960~1970 at the city.

 

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Besides, the traffic was horrible. People just walked everywhere at the middle of the road and the van taxi stopped whenever they wanted. The worst thing was males on the street and cars started shouting at me and made fun of me. Even two of drunken males bothered me. It was just around lunch time. How come there were drunken people already from the day time.
When I bought something from groceries, I could see people looked too cold that I felt like I was in Russia. But when the males on the street bothered and flirted at me on horrible traffic road, I felt like I was in Africa. It was weird that I felt like I was between Russia and Africa.

 

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I stopped at a very small village, which had many hotels. There were only local people I could feel. At the next day when I went to the beach, I could see many people were a bit old age or there were many families with small children. It seemed that it was totally local family place and all young people and travelers went to Batumi.

 

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It was taken by my Drone. Compred to Dlsr, the picture from drone was still very good.

 

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A local people who saw my drone brought his drone as well. Mine was Phantom3 which was more expensive model than his one. Of course, I thought his drone was not under 100 $. His one was expensive one as well. But just compared to mine, his drone looked like a toy.

 

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I didn’t fly my drone every day that I was not used to drive, so I was nervous time to time. I usually tried to avoid where many people were. So, I flew my drone in the morning, empty place, or hiding myself at somewhere. When people surrounded me, then I could not concentrate at all and it could drive very dangerous situation such as I hurt people with my drone. So, I prefer to fly my drone alone at all.

 

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Just before starting cycling, I had traditional Georgian food. It was too greasy and big to finish easily. I just ate because it looked like high calorie, which would help me for cycling. In side of food, there were cheese. I had never had this one again after it because it was not my type. During traveling in Georgia, I saw many obese people. I guessed that there were many high calorie foods like just what I had.

 

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I could see many old rusty houses in Georgia. But interesting thing was the police station looked very nice in every village or city. It was built with the window. Every police station looked similar.

 

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When I passed many small villages, people were so generous. It was opposite thing because when I passed the city, males bothered me too much. I guessed the difference was actually there were many old people in a small village and they were gentle usually.
I heard that there was another Korean girl on a bicycle and her diary was full of ‘fuxxxx Georgia..F….F..Fuxx’ while cycling in Georgia. The western people (non-Asian) or males or couples who passed here with their bicycle would not understand why she wrote like that. They might blame just her “Oh come on. I had amzing experience with kind Georigian people. You are just too negative. Come on be easy.” People usually could not understand this kind of situation because they would never have this experience. The experience of cycling in this kind of country as female Asian alone would be very different from others, which was the most pity thing because while other people had wonderful experience, the people like her would struggle.
Actually to cycle in Georgia was much difficult than to cycle in Turkey for me. In Turkey, every day a few males tried to flirt. But I just ignored and it was fine. Actually Turkish people were more gentle and polite that there were few people shouting at me on the street and making fun of my skin color. But since I came to Georgia, males on the street had bothered me too often at every big city. So, I could not enjoy when I had to pass a big city.

 

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I went to a small city and checked some hotel, but it was not cheap. I was thinking where I should sleep tonight.

 

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I went to a police station and asked. They didn’t allow me to pitch my tent around the police station. But just a bit far place was fine like the picture. I could not remember when I asked for a toilet to a police officer. Maybe early morning or middle of the night. After I used the toilet, the police officer rebuked me with the reason I used a toilet. If I were a boy, I would just turn around and pee.  I was too embarrassed because I never had people who rebuked with the reason like it…. :(

 

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At the next morning, I had some cookie for breakfast. Poor dog was watching me, so I shared with him.

 

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It was very hot day that I started like 6:30 am. There was very interesting thing on the road. Every people brought their cow and walked to somewhere.

 

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Many houses looked like this in Georgia. I didn’t mean to judge with people’s house. What I watned to talk was I saw many low GDP’ countries. But there were too much rusty houses in Georgia compared to similar GDP countries, which was my curious.

 

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When I looked this picture, I felt very disgusting. It was not because of high calorie food, but because of the situation at that time. I was so hungry and I asked local people and found this restaurant. It was very big restaurant but old. I ordered something to eat. There was cheese at the inside and egg covered it. When the lady served, I saw cockroach was passing and she stepped on it like ‘it is nothing’. After that I saw too many cockroach passing on the restaurant. I had meal at so many bad condition’s restaurants while traveling. But it was the most place I saw cockroach.

 

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After lunch, I found some empty place which was a bit far from the main road. I thought people would not come to me, so I decided to fly my drone.

 

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Picture was taken by the drone

 

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When I had to stop for a toilet, I saw very funny drawing. I watched something about Georgia before coming by chance on Youtube. It was said men don’t wear umbrella but only women use it. And I found the drawing of umbrella in front of a girl toilet.

 

Korean education channel made it. You don’t need to understand Korean. Just watch for a video. You will see only girl uses umbrella. Narration told even he didn’t know why only girl uses it.

 

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The sheath of the cable had peeled off when my handle bar was turned suddenly. But when I connected copper wire each side, it didn’t work out.

 

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So, I went to the garage, but they did exactly what I did that they could not fix as well.

 

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I went to the place which offline map told there was a hotel. But hotel didn’t exist. Since Georgia, offline map’s information was wrong quite often. I found some hotel on the road. But it was expensive and rusty that I didn’t stay.

 

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I hoped if I found a cheap hotel, I would take the rest at early afternoon. But there was nothing that I had to keep cycling. Once I entered into valley, I saw people selling many pottery things.

 

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It was difficult to cycle on the mountain, but scenery was very beautiful. This picture was taken by Dslr because I didn’t have the time to fly my drone around the sunset.

 

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There were many beautiful places to set up tent, but I set up my tent at the behind of the hospital because I was not brave. The workers at the hospital invited me for tea and dinner later. Then it seemed like I built trust that they asked me to uninstall my tent and sleep at the inside. Even I could take the shower that my night became so relax thank to them.

 

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Interesting thing was that the building of hospital was very nice. This was in contrast to local people’s house. I was wondering that the government spent much money for public building.

There was one funny thing I found in Georgia was that people in even a small village gave me receipt when I bought 30 cents water. I was wondering and guessing three things. Maybe the government were so strict that the government threw the book at tax dodgers or people were too trustful to lie at the government, or the government build really good system that nobody can evade taxes.

 

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The driver put watermelon at the top, behind, and inside.

 

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I was so hungry but a vendor sold only corns. I was looking for proper meal that I skipped it.

 

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Long tunnel

 

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I saw really weird thing at the road. From the beginning to the end of the town, I could see street venders selling all same thing. I thought that it would be brick or mushroom. I watched people and realized it was bread. I was curious it was real bread or not which they were showing at the outside. If it was real, they would sell dusty bread?

 

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I bought one and I saw she gave me the bread from the inside, not the street one. The tasty was awesome. The edge of bread was very crunch, but the center was very soft. It was sweet as well. I loved it so much. Unfortunately, I could not see this bread again. Oh I missed it.

 

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After I came out from the mountain, there was the flat road.

 

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Late afternoon, finally I found a restaurant. It was cheap and tasty. Actually it was little bit sour, but I was so hungry that it was so good food to me.

 

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After it, there was very hard uphill. I ate too much food and on the uphill, my stomach was too uncomfortable. Arriving at a guest house, I vomited.
But this guest house was too weird like other one. Usually there were no worker or owner and I had to make a call, but they didn’t speak English so it was impossible to communicate. On booking website, they said they had lots of things on the room, but many things were missed actually. They told they could speak good English on the website, but not at all. I cannot understand why many Georgian guest houses do this lie thing on booking website.
The owner didn’t put the sheet on the other beds although I asked. She could just ask me not to use other bed and put a sheet. I felt like I was sleeping at the room under the construction. They really didn’t know how to run hotels.
I was unlucky that I had a few weird bad experiences with Georgia guesthouse. I usually didn’t have problem with hotels I stayed wherever. So, what happened in Georgia was weird thing to me.

 

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I stayed for a few days in Gori. There was some place which I could see the same thing I saw at Cappadocia in Turkey. I wanted to take the bus, but I could find any bus information. So I cycled there maybe 10 km (6.25 mi) far.
It was a strict place that they didn’t allow me to take the tripod. Also expensive camera was forbidden. I already saw lots of rocks in Cappadocia that it was not that much special. But scenery was beautiful that I liked somehow.

 

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I flew my drone near the small village around Gori.

 

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I became more nervous when people surrounded me because it was difficult to concentrate then.

 

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There was very special architecture. Terrace was made by wood. I was wondering that it was originally from Georgia or other country.

 

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The view from the top of Gori

 

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I arrived at the capital after cycling on the busy traffic. Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, had McDonald, Subway, Wendy’s, Domino Pizza and so on which were from the U.S. I heard that Georgia was the country which was close to the U.S although there were at Soviet Union before.

Their letter was so amazing to me. The letter looked longish and the top and bottom was round. The next country, Armenia, was similar but it was more square at the top and bottom.

 

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There was a big street market in the city which was a bit far from the center. There was everything. Later I went to one of biggest markets in Iran and I got disappointed because actually the market in Tbilisi was bigger and I could find everything there.

 

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I bought a strong black plastic bag for waterproof for my drone. Also I bought a few things I needed.

 

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Georgian beer~

 

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Georgian money
There were more kinds, but it was all I had when I took the picture.

 

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I found a small restraint on the street by the chance and the tasty was awesome.

 

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I found wine museum by chance. Georgia was very famous for wine. But I was not used to drinking wine and I only drank cheap one. So for me Georgian wine was not that much special.

 

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To get Iran visa was not much complicated because these days many people were heading to Iran for touring. So the first step was to apply letter at a local travel agency which there were a few trustful companies these days. After that go to Iran embassy and apply with photo, insurance, and copy of passport. But actually I didn’t have insurance. I went to a travel agency on the street and I bought 30 days’ insurance. It was interesting to see how easy I can get. I paid something like $30. It was my first time ever in the trip that I had the insurance. Haha

 

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There were not much attractions at the city center actually.

 

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When I passed many villages, I saw this kind of thing often on the street. It looked so weird that I didn’t try. I bought it after I asked them what it was. It was around 1$ for one.

 

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I thought it was some animal’s blood or fat because of color. But actually it was fruit juicy thing and there was nut at the center. It was sweet and tasty. If it was cheaper, I would buy more for cycling.

 

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My favorite thing to see in the city center

 

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There was a cable car for around 1$.

 

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I heard Opera was cheap. But actually what I watched was musical and I could not understand it.

 

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It was the most interesting thing in the old town to me. Every hour, something came out on the top.

 

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I watched fountain show with music later. It was small but beautiful.

It was a bit chilly after the dark that I was looking for some coffee shop. There was only expensive restaurant, but I thought coffee would be cheap everywhere. So, I went there. But the server could not speak English that I had language barrier. Then one guy from other table helped me and he asked me to join to his table. I was bored alone that I joined there. The guy was around 50 or 60 years old from England, his girlfriend was around 25 or 30 years old from Iran, and there was his local business partner. The guy offered me something to eat but I ate before that I said ok and had only wine.
But this British guy was too crap and much disgusting than street males who bothered me that he kept telling disgusting stuff at me in front of his Iranian girlfriend. If I were her, I would leave as soon as possible with saying “Let’s break up”. But once I drank a glass of wine, I could understand why Iranian girl was staying with this British guy. The wine was really amazing. Finally, I could understand why people said Georgian wine is so gorgeous. Maybe Iranian girl was staying with him to drink more good wines. But for me one glass of wine was enough. I made excuse and leave after finishing it. When I said good bye and hug with Iranian girl, I could feel she was very warm and sweet person. Then I doubted maybe my judgement was wrong. But soon I thought how British guys treated me in front of his girlfriend and there was no such a reason to stay with him except wine.

There was one interesting thing that I had met some Iranian girls during the trip. But I had never seen them wearing hijab. I had seen girl who immigrated from the Middle East to Europe and many of them wore hijab all the time. But only Iranian girl didn’t wear it.

 

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I came out when the morning was quiet.

 

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To fly my drone. The picture was taken by the drone.

 

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All was taken by drone and I really liked because it was high quality.

 

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After I went out of the city, I set up my tent around the police station again. This time the police was kind that they allowed me to use a toilet without any problem.

 

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My new friend, black dog

 

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A kickstand was broken that I had to lean on something all the time because my bicycle was too heavy to stand it again if I lean on the floor. Because of it, my resting time got less and sometimes just I took the break on a bicycle.

 

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Pig.. looked so relax?

 

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I had met Swiss motor cyclist on difficult uphill.

 

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The day before, the police officer drew some map for me. I had offline map that actually I didn’t care about it well and threw away later. But I realized why he drew that for me. There were two ways to go to Armenia, the next country. One was very well paved road and the other one was too bumpy and hilly road. The road I took was the hardest road for cycling.

 

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At least the landscape was gorgeous. It looked there were so many amazing places for camping, which I could not do it.

 

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I asked local people for setting up my tent at their yard. At first, a few of family members said yes. But then father came out and said No. I didn’t want to see they fought because of me. So usually if it happened like this, I must get out of as soon as possible with saying “Sorry”.
This time I set up my tent at the police station again.

 

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I realized all the time I set up my tent at the police station except one time, in Hospital. But this time police officers were so kind that they shared dinner with me and they let me take shower. Actually their police office was not built with glass that it was not like other good one. It was at the little small village, but they were the kindest police officers I had met in Georgia.

 

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I tried to fix my panier bag when I came back to my tent. I really didn’t like this Ortlieb bag at all. It was broken again gain again… endless fixing the most important part…because of it water came inside easily.. If I found better company than Ortlieb, I would try.

 

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Tonight I had more friends! Yeah! I was lucky!

 

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It was really quiet road that there were not many cars passing. One guy who took care of cows was dancing with music from the car and then he saw me and walked to me with saying something. I was scared that I just said thank you and went away.

 

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There was one guy who drove taxi van stopped his car and called me. And then he gave me snacks. I did need something to eat because my speed was too slow to reach a grocery. I appreciated to him.

 

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It was really empty road that I played with my drone again. It became my favorite picture. It looked like the border was close.

 

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Finally, I could see paved road over there. I could not wait to cycle on the nice road that I cycled fast to the immigration. Let’s move to Armenia!

 

 

 

 

Videos about Georgia

 

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===================================================================
Route
Days in Goergia = 23 Days
Distance of cycling in Goergia = 593.52 km (368.79 mi)
Cities I stayed in Goergia = 8 Cities
Gonio, Ureki, Samtredia, Boriti, Gori, Tbilisi, Kumisi, Saparlo
Expenditure in Goergia = $500? ($1=2.7 Lila)
(My laptop was in trouble and I had to format. So I lost the date of expenditure of five months. I just calculate with withdraw. It is not accurate. I saved important thing on D drive that other thing was fine.)


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