Day 21 – Kazan to N. Novgorod – 488.1Km – All the Bumps Smoothed Out

Yesterday was a rest day in Kazan. Well it was more like a spa day for the car. New shocks (thank you Schebish Brothers), oil change, all grease points lubricated, nuts and bolts throughout the car tighten (amazing what come loose on these very bumpy Russian roads), the undercarriage cleaned and a general wash. Yes the paint actually shines after removing all that Mongolian dirt. Though we still have plenty of Mongolian dust in the car. Bryon was at the garage the entire day. I waited at the hotel, recovering from my tonsillitis, thankfully I am 100% again.

The hotel we stayed in was dubbed Reno, no not as fancy as Las Vegas. It was surreal. When we came back from dinner there were at least 3 stages and dance floors through the ground floor. Now we know why they renamed it Korston Club Hotel. The rooms were far enough from the action, so we got a good nights sleep. Oh did I mention they had a strip club in the basement? Yes hand washing ensued after each trip on the elevator. Well maybe I am exaggerating a little. No photos of the hotel, I didn’t want those memories preserved.

The car was runner by great, except for a few more squeaks, so we opted to do all the route today. It was warm, but the countryside was beautiful. It was nice to see all the people in the small villages coming out to wave is in. They are all smiles and cheering us on, well maybe the old cars. Either way it does lift your spirits and when you wave back it bring ear to ear smiles across their faces. Still haven’t figured out why some of the other competitors don’t wave. I think we might have made up for it in our enthusiasm.

We crossed a pontoon bridge today, it was interesting and the people swimming in the river took time to cheer us on. The car is doing much better and we were able to get in an hour early. But I won’t miss those potholes. We have sworn to never complain about the roads back home.

We have safely landed in N. Novgorod and have showers and are ready for dinner. Have a great evening/morning/afternoon, everyone wherever you are.

Kindness, Forgiveness, Courage.

Be well,

Stephen and Bryon

PS: Lenin seems to be following the route.