Ben Around the World Diary – Day 22 – 4th August 2018

Ben Around the World Diary – Day 22 – 4th August 2018

  • ODO 2825
  • Location Fortress Gate of Trajan
  • Weather 20-30 Sunny all day – the first sunny day in two weeks here in Bulgaria
  • Feelings Sad to leave my new Sofia family but so ready to be back in the road

For weeks after I left home in May I felt sad to have left so many friends behind in London. after two months in Sofia I didn’t want to leave. The international co-working community took me in. My lifestyle in Bulgaria was a perfect balance of working in Betahaus in the week and exploring nature every weekend. The who month wheeled past too fast for my liking. Two months of working and it was time to leave. My heart lifted to the full table at my leaving dinner and yet again I had friends riding out with me the first days – Matt and Jelle.

We met outside the cathedral in Sofia a little later than planned. Neil saw us all off. While we were waiting my paragliding friends from happened to be driving by and came and hugged me goodbye. Taking about coming to fly with me in Oludeniz Turkey next month when I get there.

The ride out of Sofia was quiet and calm. Better than I could have hopped for the capital city. Our quick pace was slowed a few kilometres later as the tarmac gave way to a narrow muddy track. The proceeding weeks of rain showed. Jelle was on a mountain bike and sailed through while Matt and I filed our forks with mud. Our wheels locked with the stuff.

After two months away from the bike I felt rusty and cramped as we sat for lunch. The bike rode like no time had passed. My new handlebar position felt comfortable and secure and my new front rack should take more of a beating this time.

We chose a 70km route for the first day and the road passed by like the days of friendship passed in Sofia. By the evening and a final climb we reached the Gate of Trajan. A reconstructed castle from the era of Bulgaria’s great conquests.

Camping out with friends, music on, fire going. This is a totally different type of traveling. Tomorrow we head to Plovdiv and Matt will head home. Jelle will see how far he can come before having to return to his business.

As the sun sets and it’s afterglow fades mars glows low and red over the horizon and the stars fade in joining from a dot to dot of planets to a paintbrush swipe of the milky-way. The arms of our galaxy painted across the sky.


Hi, my name is Ben and I’m a startup founder and adventurer. Highlights of my career include building three startups from zero to exit (, StreamOn and working on Aux) and cycling – halfway – around the world in 2018. Subscribe for updates, blog posts and videos on my startup life and adventure travels.
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