World without borders


The world is not as full of turmoil and as bad as the media makes it out to be, said Ingrid and Nicole, two Belgian nationals who have been travelling around the world, at a press meet that was organised here on March 31.

“The world is as peaceful and as beautiful as ever. Whenever you smile, you get a smile in return,” claimed the duo who set out on a 10,000 km round trip of the world from Belgium on April 17, 2004.

Their journey so far has taken them through 18 different countries of Europe and Asia and they say they have never been mistreated or robbed.

“Wherever we’ve gone, people waved at us and welcomed with warm hearts,” said Ingrid.

No blockade or bandh have stopped the two from carrying on with their journey and they arrived in Nepal in March.

The way the two travel is interesting to say the least as according to Ingrid, they have declared to “travel across the globe without using any mechanised machines of modern transportation”.

As such they have kayaked across the Artic seas, ridden reindeer sledges, skied on roller blades at freezing temperatures, have been pulled along on horse-drawn carriages, mounted camels in the deserts, trekked and cycled.

“People called us crazy when we announced our travel plan,” Nicole recalled and it took them two months of making the rounds of municipalities before they could finally leave the country.

They traversed through Sweden, Germany, Russia, Estonia, Byelorussia, Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, India. Each country has its own uniqueness, not only in culture and tradition, but also in physical features, “and our journey has been a really good experience,” said Ingrid.

The ‘Crazy twins’ (as dubbed by their hometown crowd) have many more miles to go and they they expect to complete their tour by 2009.

Tibet is the next destination on their itinerary but getting a visa for the country has proved to be a next to impossible task for them.

And they are not travelling to spread the ‘message of peace’ as many such travellers have been doing for the past so many years. They are doing this to have fun and to see their names etched in the Guinness Book of World Records.

To travese the globe in such a manner is never an easy quest for women, one not even imagined in countries like ours. May their dream come true.