色々書いてるがあくまで自転車でちょっと通り過ぎただけなので、その土地のことなど実際はほとんどわからなかったと思う。その程度の記録だと思って欲しい。

I just passed through places by bicycle, and so I actually knew almost nothing about the people and the culture of each place. Therefore, please keep in mind that what I wrote does not precisely describe the reality.

Je n’ai que passé les endroits à vélo, donc je n’ai pas en effet connu le peuple et la culture de chaque place. Par conséquence, les articles ne montrent pas très bien la réalité. Sache-le.


The following is what I thought just after the longest journey in 2011. Now (2016) I have different views from some of them.

THE INEQUALITY, 2011

In 2004, I left Japan and started a five-year journey by bicycle from Morocco to explore the world. I stayed in Africa for three years and in Europe, Middle East and in North America for two years each. I also had a half-year of work experience in Norway. During my journey, I tried to become familiar with the society of each place; consequently, I gained a unique perspective on the inequalities in this world. The present world has a big issue: the great inequality between rich and poor. The world is full of monopolies that are the prime cause of unfair societies. There are two kinds of groups monopolizing the world’s wealth: families and nation states.

To begin with, I would like to discuss families, the fundamental units in the world. “Families are found in every culture in this world,” says an encyclopedia.¹ This is true; however, I think the extent of the family greatly varies according to culture. From my own experience, I can mention two regions which I deem extreme. In terms of indigenous cultures, Central Africa has the most inclusive families. By contrast, Northern European culture seems the most exclusive to strangers. For example, people there are so distant that it took a long time to make friends with them. On the contrary, in central Africa, they call people other than their family members mama, papa, son, daughter, sister, and brother. Community solidarity is essential in extreme poverty. They even called either son or brother, though I was a complete foreigner for them. I also discovered an interesting matter in contrast to the above fact: the results are just the opposite for “the social system.” There were the fewest boundaries among each family in Northern Europe and the most in Central Africa. The economic gap among North European people was less than that in Japan. This is because of the high taxation of the society. One example in Norway is that twenty-eight percent of my salary was taken for public funds. By contrast, the governments of Central African nations are desperate. Some people are well off, but the rest of the population lives on two dollars a day. The commodities are much more expensive there in supermarkets than they are in Japan. All in all, in central Africa, a person’s success depends on his or her social status at birth. In short, people born into poor families deserve no chances to achieve their dreams.

Next, I believe that all countries make the world unfair as well. For instance, people in rich countries take advantage of the cheap labor forces of people in poor countries. I am sure that this is a form of discrimination against those in developing nations. Furthermore, industrialized nations never issue their visas to people of underdeveloped nations. The system is just the same as that of the homelands of South Africa during the apartheid period. In fact, we have not changed at all. Most people are not aware of this for two reasons. First, the world system is extremely partial, in which, developed nations are so favored. Second, we have lived in this absurd system for a long time. In addition, I would argue that there are truly two nationalities in this world: Haves and Have Nots, in other words, rich families and poor families. I would begin my search for a way to solve this inequality. Perhaps the solution is simple: to eliminate the two economic extremes in families and countries. If we could do so, the greater part of the issues existing in every society would vanish. Crimes would decrease, too, since criminal parents mostly bring up possible criminals. No longer would we spend war expenditures, because no militaries would keep the economic monopolies of their countries. I do not expect people to carry out this idea; their minds are fixed. Therefore, I focus on the importance of lessening the number of people at economic extremes. Large taxes, for example, are a viable approach for this.

To sum up, I have come up with some original insights such as the reality of systemic racism. Nevertheless, since I am young and my knowledge is also biased, I am eager to learn new facts from new experiences. Finally I claim that my ideas are not found from any books and on-line resources. Instead, I contemplated alone for 5 years while pedaling , sleeping and interacting with local people in the world’s possibly most impressive place: Africa.


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2009 August
, south sudan

First, I passed by the ‘no-man’s-land’ on January 2006 (the west bank of lake Turkana.) Next, the other day on February 2009, I was in the library of University of Cape Town for the research of the route of the 3rd African cycling. I had such an impressive experience in ‘no-man’s-land’ last time, that I decided to go into the region again. The entire region including ‘no-man’s-land’ is called NILE BASSIN: presumably the remotest area in Africa. Some months later, I entered south sudan from Lokichokio, but I had to return only 5 days later.

2009 août,
 le soudan du sud

Pour la première fois, j’ai passé ‘la terre de néant’ au janvier 2006 (la rive de l’ouest de lac turkana.) Au février 2009, Je lisais des livres afin de décider la route de 3ème cyclisme en afrique. Comme ‘la terre de néant’ m’avait été si impressionné que ma résolution à y aller encore s’est affermié.
 
La region entière inclue ‘la terre de neant’ s’appele
 
LE BASSIN DU NIL – la zone la plus eloignée de l’Afrique.
 
J’ai entré le soudain du sud par Lokichokio, mais j’ai dû rentrer après seulement 5 jours.

2009 september, ethiopia

It had been 4 years since I came to ethiopia last time. I proceeded the journey to Gambela from Omorate (a border village), passing by Omo National Park. Gambela was quite similar to south sudan, but the situation was more stable. I could see the flat land of south sudan from the uphill slope to Dembidolo. Then, I cycled in Beni Shangul. I had to stop again for the civil unrest in the region. Then, from Addis Abeba I took a plane to Mekele airport (Kwiha) to go through Danakil Depression. However, it was also turned down by the political situation.

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2009 septembre, l’éthiopie

Cela a déjà fait 4 ans que je suis venu en éthiopie, la dernière fois. Je me suis dirigé d’Omorate (un village de frontière) jusqu’à Gambela, en passant Omo parc national. Gambela a tout ressemblé au soudan du sud. Mais la situation a été beaucoup plus stable. J’ai pu voir la terre plate du soudan du sud de la côte qui part à Dembidolo.
 
En suite, je me suis avancé vers Beni-Shangul. Il a été encore impossible de faire le cyclisme là, selon le problème civil.
 
D’Addis Abeba, on a pris un avion pour aller à l’aeroport de Mekele (Kwiha.) Puis j’allais passer Danakil Dépression et pourtant il m’a fallu encore arrêter le cyclisme là à cause de la situation politique.
 Quel Dommage!

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2ème aventure dans la forêt du congo, 09′

* un chimpanzé et mon ami à Bomili en dr. congo

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* une route entre Mambasa et Nia Nia en dr. congo

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* Le métre dépassé 1,000 km au congo, aux environs de Bukavu

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un cyclisme vers Sudd, 09′

* en Route vers l’Aventure (jusqu’à Kapoeta)

Selon la construction, la route était en bon etat, donc j’ai pu rouler sans grandes difficulté. Toutefois, il y avait vraiment trop de mouches en route. J’ai mis une masque afin de me proteger contre leurs attaques. Par ailleurs, il a fait tellement chaud que je me suis aspergé souvent de l’eau de bouteille sur la tête. L’eau était absorbée et restée au-dessus. Le chapeau et la serviette, ils étaient indispensables pour me rester frais en ce temps-là.

En arrivant à Kapoeta après 2 jours du cyclisme de la frontière du kenya, Lokichokio..

***

À Kapoeta j’ai séjouné dans l’établissement de l’OGN et un accident s’est produit. Un serpent a jeté du venin sur les yeux d’un chauffeur de l’OGN. On a donc appelé un avion pour l’envoyer jusqu’à Nairobi. Les serpents habitants au soudan sont très dangereux. Un autre homme s’est aussi fait aveugler avant l’accident, prés de l’OGN. brrr.. Grace au traitement à l’hopital, le chauffeur ont pu echapé au pis. Mais sa vue a été si baissé qu’il ne peut plus conduire voiture. Ainsi, la vie est très sévère au soudan du sud. J’ai quitté l’OGN dans leur voiture, et je suis rentré à la frontière du kenya, Lokichokio sous l’escorte militaire. Et puis, je suis allé à Nairobi pour préparer le cyclisme prochain vers l’éthiopie. Ainsi le soudan du sud était très aventureux. Je veux y aller encore une fois dans le futur pour faire le cyclisme bien que la place soit si terrible. Evidemment, on repartirait après le rétablissement de l’ordre du pays. Par exemple, il y a une grande construction sur le canal de Junglei. Je suis curieux aussi de la région d’ouest près de la centrafrique. Je me retrouvrais là, un jour.


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Le paludisme

Je l’ai atteint une fois au mali, au petit congo, en éthiopie et deux fois au grand congo. On ne tomberait pas malade tant que l’on prend tous les jours les comprimés preventives. N’arrête pas de prendre le reméde même si tu es déjà à l’extérieur de la régions endémique. J’ai beaucoup frissonné de fiévre et ma température a monté jusqu’à quarante-deux. Au mali, comme j’avais tellement froid, le corps s’est fait agréablement chauffer sous le soleil du plomb. En fait, le paludisme, c’est à la fois douloureux et amusant..

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* Bonne Arrivée à Mossaka sur la pirogue, Sangha rivière au congo brazzaville

Navigator, Navigator.. this song was Colin’s favorite song during the travel with him. I met a two-meter tall, sensible and relaxed guy at the village of Ouésso in the north of small congo. We bought a canoe, and started going down a branch of congo river. When we reached the beginning of the main stream of the river, Colin left for Brazzaville by a passenger boat, and so I had to continue the voyage alone. However, he rowed our canoe much more than me until then. I’m greatly thankful for him. Thanks, my big brother, Colin.

People advised me not to travel in the main stream because of its maelstroms, but I did not follow their reasonable suggestions, since my journey was supposed to be accomplished without motorized power. A huge ONATRA boat came to approach my canoe with loud music, and some canoe merchants were also attracted to the boat from the villages of the riverside. If they did not manage their oars well, the screw of the boat would catch them up. Maelstroms did not happen; however, a storm raged me, and my canoe lost its control in the rapid current. On contrary, the river was occasionally so calm, that I felt as if I were on a still lake (just like those in Scandinavia.). One day, a canoe was found in the distance. When I passed by the canoe, the man on it greeted me very quietly.

At night, my tent was shrouded in a concentration of mosquito. There were about two hundreds on a surface of the tent whose side of triangle is seventy centimetres. I could not get out of my tent even when I had to empty my bowels. Despite the mosquitos, local people were working outside.

Sometimes I did not row the canoe, and just hung onto its stern by my hands, my body being in water and drifting down the river. I still remember clearly the gigantic columns of clouds in congo. It was the happiest moment of my life.

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Thoughtless people fight with armed groups, while sensible people debate independently.

Le Film d’Action

L’autre jour, un globetrotter bien connu pour plusieurs de ses aventures, il a dit “Lagos est la scène réelle du film d’action.” Je suis tout à fait d’accord avec son avis. Beaucoup de camions remboursés se sont trouvés à la coté de la route jusqu’à la ville. Un des camions prenait feu.
 Il fallait passer un pont parmi trois afin d’atteindre Lagos. J’y suis arrivé malheureusement soir donc j’ai pedalé vers la grande vue nocture de Lagos. Un homme nu marchait sur le trottoir du pont mais il ne m’a rien fait. Pendant le séjour, beaucoup d’événements se sont passés en Lagos. Les mendiants sans les jambes déplaçant sur planches à roulettes m’étaient surtout remarquables. Ils roulaient sous la foule de gens de Lagos. Je ne peux pas encore oublier un monsieur avec les yeux rouges qui demandait la nourriture sur le skateboard.
 La lapidation était effrayante en Nairobi. La violence collective était de gros ennuis en Kampala.
 J’ai eu une altercation avec un commissaire de police d’un quartier en Kinshasa et il me fallait passer une nuit dans le cachot. Lors d’y entrer, on m’a donné un coup de poing. Ça puait terriblement dedans à cause d’urine. On a dormi étroitement dans l’espace. Toutefois, les prisonniers, ils m’ont traité avec beaucoup de gentillesse. Heureusement, je ne me suis fait pas violer. Tout au long de l’experience, on avait vraiment horreur.

In Kampala, I met a long term world traveller saying “Lagos is a real action movie.“ 
Agree. 
Lots of petrol lorries were fallen to the side of the road to Lagos. One of those was even in flame. Unfortunately, I arrived at the city in the night, and so I had to pass one of the three bridges to get to the the downtown for the the cheap accommodation (YMCA.) Then, I started cycling towards the night view of skyscrapers of Lagos. There was a naked man walking on the sidewalk, but he luckily did not react to me. During the stay in the city, lots of incidents happened, and beggars with no legs were for me the most impressive. They were moving on their skateboards under crowds of pedestrians. There was a guy with bloodshot eyes who was begging foods desperately on his skateboard..


Stone throwing was sporadically happening in Nairobi, and in Kampala, I scared of mob violence which takes place at times. 
I had quarrel with the head chief of a police station in Kinshasa, and he sent me me to a detention facility (just for a night). Once I got in, two of the prisoners lightly hit me. The room was stinking of their urine. We slept together, fitting our skins since the room was so tiny and over crowded. 
However, the most of them were very kind to me. Fortunately, none of them raped me. 
All in all, it was a dreadful experience. (Now I think that I was wrong, because in 2008 when I was there, the entire area of the country was No-Go zone.)


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un cyclisme, été 2012 (ottawamontréalnew yorkorlandonouvelle orléans)

photo: arrivée en vélo à NYC


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