For me, traveling is one of the greatest gifts that you can give to yourself. Because it broadens horizons and always helped me to overcome barriers – not only in a territorial sense. I always wanted to do a longer distance overlands, because I wanted to experience how cultures change – and time.
So far, I travelled generally in a plane that catapulted me to the other side of the world straight into a different time zone. But now I am experiencing every hour the time changes by traveling overlands. Follow my journey through time.
Time change no. 1: Kosovo to Bulgaria
From Pristina in Kosovo my path led me through Bulgaria. And even if Greece was the following destination, something was very Greek to me as soon as I entered Bulgaria. First, my navigator took me on a small dirt road to the top of a mountain, that I initially didn’t want to visit. And when I turned and typed in my coordinates again, the information that was displayed didn’t fit to what I expected at all. How could these few kilometers that I only had to cover last two hours? I shook my head and took off, as I could not find any other mistake. When I arrived in less than an hour, I slowly got it. The change of time caught me on the hop because I did not expect it to happen before Greece. When I was finished with dinner, it was already 22:00. And I was annoyed: They had stolen an hour of rest and sleep! The next morning I felt like having a jet lag (and no, I was not drinking alcohol that night before).
Time change no. 2: Turkey to Georgia
I was prepared for this time change. And indeed it was almost desperately needed. I like to sleep with open windows and wake up with the first morning light – in eastern Turkey the sun beamed at me to inhuman hours like 5am and I started to champ at the bit. At the same time I couldn’t just leave because I didn’t want to miss the breakfasts the hotels I stayed in offered. Breakfast is probably my preferred mealtime and it’s just much more cozy in normal clothes than having it somewhere on the street with all your driving gear on. Shortly before 7 I therefore always harassed the whole staff which was still in the middle of the breakfast preparations to push their speed a bit.
After my first night in Bakuriani in Georgia, the time had moved back to where it belonged. I was still not very happy about another hour being taken away from me. But finally perceived time and official time felt like one again.
Time change no. 3: Georgia to Russia
Seems like I had been happy about the time adjusting to my wake-up habits a bit too early . Instead of just remaining the way it was time decided in Russia to just give me back an hour. Means : annoying sun at 5am in the face. Dear Kazakhstan, please fix this issue!
Time change no. 4 + 5: Russia and Kazakhstan
Or: How I decided to construct my own time.
Again unexpected my watch switched an hour forward somewhere along the way between Grozny and the Russian city Astrakhan and made me very happy not to wait another day for Kazakhstan to fix my issue. Kazakhstan took it more serious so and robbed another hour when I crossed the border. Seriously? Two hours in two days? When I arrived in Atyrau I agreed with the owner of the hostel that I would better leave early because of the desert-heat – so yes, breakfast at 5:45 am should just be perfect for my needs. It was only when I went to bed that my phone accustomed to the rapid time change of the last days – instead of 22:50 from Grozny it showed the real time. 0:50! Damn, 0:50? Only four hours of sleep if I wanted to pack before breakfast. My overwhelming fatigue just lead to the most logical behavior. Instead of setting the alarm one hour later I dug myself through the manual settings of my phone to change time and set it back an hour. 23:50. I felt relieved. And the sleep before midnight is supposed to be the most important anyways!
Stay tuned for the next change of time, This article will be updated regularly during my journey.