MORE AND MORE FRENCHMEN GET TO LIKE TRANSCARPATHIA
I met her last year - low lean dark-complexioned woman from Marseilles, a dedicated traveller of retirement age, whose main passion is getting to know the world.
Having left her hometown in early summer the Frenchwoman travelled all over the Old Continent by foot and hitchhiking. Martina Bedok persistenly passed village by village, city by city; after having acquainted with Romania, she moved to Yasinia in Transcarpathia, and thence across the region - to Uzhok.
The covered route is carefully marked on the map. The most memorable impressions, she told, are left from Khust, Kolochava, Zhdeniyevo, Volovets, beech forests of Velyky Berezny district, listed in the UNESCO World Heritage, site of meteorite fall in Kniahynia. She also remembered alpine Uzhok, its pass, swerves.
Martina says that although she has seen a lot of things in Europe, Asia and Africa, our region is also amazing, exotic and full of contrasts. In addition to the nature she admires people of Transcarpathia - good, honest, willing to help. The Frenchwoman referred to several particularly memorable examples: a family in a small border village Lubnya, where the mistress treated the native of Marseilles with lump of fresh delicious cheese made of cow's milk, and her husband drove the tourist to the central highway. "Transcarpathia - says Martina Bedok - is as interesting as what I have seen in Japan, Morocco, Cambodia, USA, Canada, Laos, Vietnam."
Martina Bedok recalls with horror when she had an operation on the spine, the disc inserted and fear of the future. Experts advised her to move a lot. And since then she spends a significant part of the year on the road. Back pain is long forgotten. Her family and friends have become accustomed to this way of Martina's life, have long ceased to complain, and are happy to spend winter evenings listening to tales of travels on far and near roads.
In her letter Martina asked to tell a little about her colleagues who also visited Transcarpathia and recommend this region of clean air, clear water and friendly people to other Frenchmen. One of them is Simon Dubois. Last year he literally fell in love with Carpathians, especially the settlements and the nature of the Transcarpathian region. 4-month journey on foot through the Carpathians (Slovakia, Poland, Ukraine, Romania and Serbia) struck with picturesque places that he could not imagine. Ukraine became extremely close to him. And Transcarpathia, he says, became his favorite place. The most striking impression left the green ridges and the magnificent Goverla peak, sincerity of Ukrainians, their charming smiles, sweet singing.
That's then S. Dubois had the idea to tell his countrymen about the Transcarpathian region on his site www.transcarpatie.dubuis.net, to help them quickly without unnecessary searches, navigate among tourist gems of the Ukrainian Carpathians. Especially after he had accidentally met in Transcarpathia with his compatriot Martina Bedok and learned about her attempts to get a good description of the Carpathian routes. Now every French traveler has tangible assistance when preparing trips to Transcarpathia and neighboring Romania. Simon, who have visited exotic places in several continents, with excitement looks back on Transcarpathia, long walks, escape from city life, the sweet taste of healing berries, meeting with pristine nature. Simon covered many kilometers of Carpathians alone (walking 2,700 kilometers in 4 months), although part of a long route he passed with his countrymen Remy Pradelle, Celia.
If crossing the Alps finds more and more fans among the French, with the Carpathians, admits Simon on the website, the situation is worse: here only the first steps have been made. And he is determined to fill the gaps in this area.
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