After his 45-day cycling tour of India, which covered 3,247 km in nine states from Kerala to Delhi in 2009, Danish cyclist Thomas Anderson is back.
The current tour which started on October 2, 2010, from Copenhagen is more adventurous in nature. His endeavour is to reach Sydney via India by bicycle in 45 days covering 15,000 km.
A master of science in engineering from the Technical University of Denmark, 27-year-old Andersen’s cycling has nothing to do with cliched claims like spreading the message of peace or uniting the world. “This is a hobby which helps me visit new countries, meet people and make friends. That’s it,” said Andersen to TOI. He gets directions on his route through his Ham radio friends.
He arrived in Goa on January 15 and reached Mangalore the next week. “I see many places, which may not be of tourist importance, which I would have missed if I had travelled by train or bus,” he notes. “What I like about this whole journey is no two days are the same. I don’t know where I will sleep next unlike most people who like to know where they sleep that night,” he says.
His 20-geared aluminum carbon bicycle weighs just seven kg. His stay at Mangalore will be longer than expected as the cycle developed a cable problem. “Since I started from Copenhagen, I had five punctures but none in India. This cable problem is the major one I have encountered,” said Andersen who takes just 10 minutes to fix a flat.
He travels quite fast covering about 100 km a day. “Because of the cycle my travel schedule is more or less fixed. I have the freedom to move anywhere without depending on public transport,” he said recalling how life was affected on Saturday because of the bandh.
Andersen is not picky about food. He eats whatever he gets. His next stop is Udupi for the car festival. “After that, I don’t know! What I know is my final destination in India is Kolkata,” he said. From Kolkata, Andersen will go to Dhaka, from there fly to Bangkok; cycle to Singapore and then fly to Sydney.