Indonesian Biker Rides into Moscow on 100-Country Tour

MOSCOW ~ Indonesian round-the-world biker Jeffrey Polnaja rolled into Moscow on Tuesday on the 43rd stage of a 100-country trip in which he has so far covered 75,000 kilometers.

The 45-year-old said he was coping well with the chill of the Russian autumn and looked forward to the next stages of his trip, which will take him through neighboring ex-Communist countries Ukraine, Moldova and Romania.

Polnaja left Jakarta on his BMW motorbike in April last year on a journey that he expects will total 330,000 kilometers and that he has dubbed a “Ride for Peace.”

At a news conference accompanied by heavy rock music, he attempted to explain his biker’s philosophy, saying: “With a motorcycle there’s no barrier …. I’m exploring this planet to feel what it feels, so I use my motorcycle to feel it.

“If I climb a high mountain, I can feel the cold of the mountain; if I pass a forest, I can smell the pine trees. If I cross a beach, I can feel the heat of the sun and the smell of the salt.”

Having been held up by armed men on two occasions – extricating himself on one occasion by a display of card tricks – and having been knocked off his bike in a Pakistani desert, Polnaja professed surprise at the ease of his journey in Russia.

“Everywhere it’s cold but your spirit is with me,” he said.

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