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Royal Enfield and Trans Himalayan route: made for each other

Lifestyle

There is no shortage of prestigious motorcycle brands. But straddling a Royal Enfield is a very special adventure. Exit speed buffs, this elegant Indian has for baseline "keep calm and ride safe ". Moreover, this bike of legend became the ideal mount to face the highest road of the world, the Trans Himalayan.   Inheritance of the British Empire, Royal Enfield is Indian since 1968, thanks to the bankruptcy of the English company and to the willingness of Indian managers. At first adopted by the local army for its robustness, it gained the heart of all thanks to its elegant shape and its power. The Chennai factory (former Madras, in the South of the country) based in 1956 by English became the brand headquarter. Here, 8 000 employees produce 30 000 new models every year.         In India, driving a Royal Enfield already means being somebody.   In many provinces, only the notables possess it. Here, you engage "for life" with your Royal. Some people buy it to pass on to their children. And in town, you can even drive it without helmet! In 50 years, many things changed at Royal Enfield except one: the hand manufacturing. You read well: in Chennai, no electronics, no computers. Assembly, painting, decoration, design, polishing everything, absolutely everything is hand-made. The fairing shines like a mirror, every logo painted on the reservoir owes its flow to the expert hand of a real artist. And this human implication gives a soul to this bike… A legend is born.         Reliable and strong, it is a high temper motorcycle made for the mountain. "You go up the mountains as a rider, but come back as an explorer ". That is what asserts the President of Royal Enfield. In the North of India we find the mythical Trans Himalayan, the highest "motor” road of the world. A proverb says "birds of a feather flock together". Thus not amazing that so many bikers of the whole world come to face it in Royal Enfield! Clermont Yu, a photographer settled in Paris, is going to try soon the adventure because" this moto makes dream of and this route is the highlight of road-trip ".       Fantastic ride   The Indian road is rarely an easy one and we all have in mind the scene of a fervent and muddled traffic. But Trans Himalayan except to the Indian rule. During 500 km, from Manali ( Himashal Pradesh) to Leh (Jammu and Kashmir) longing the north Indian border, mountains are calling the shots to the region of Ladakh, more than 5 000 m high.   From passes to valleys, it draws volutes, makes the traveler crossing the Indian tundra and mineral universe. Most of the time, it rather looks like a track. Riding is an odyssey during which bodies and machines are severely tested by holes, pebbles, mud and ravines. Facing the Trans Himalayan, it first means overcoming your fear of the unknown. Here, abrupt changes of weather, collapsed road, gas stations lack, bogged down trucks or rivers to be crossed give rhythm to the daily run of bikers.         We often meet poor workers coming from all the country to reconstruct sections destroyed by landslides. No way to forget the altitude… Pilots and engines run out of air in 4 000 m and tune-ups are needed. But the old bikers assert that a Royal Enfield never let you down in the difficulties. You just have to play smooth driving, to be patient and the solidarity between fellow riders makes the rest.   The reward? This unordinary road offers incredible feelings. The green, white or lunar landscapes, the summits crowned with clouds which glitter on a desert plain, a herd of yaks bathing in blue waters of Pangong’s lake, stopovers which often look like makeshift camps, a salutary massage in Leh to rest your painful muscles …   You will not forget the permanent smile of Indian drivers in their shipwrecked trucks nor the possible stop to Sony and Bony, a kind of Aladdin's cave where we patch up Royal Enfield of all Himalaya. And of course, the welcoming temples and the colored prayer wheels which mark out the road because you circulate on the "territory of gods ". Here, you can make bless your bike; A major rite for a machine having a soul.           Finally, the arrival to Leh, little town near the Roof of the world, is the end of the journey but its presence is a surprise so far from everything, with snowy summits background. One says that on arrival, we feel like deserving to be there.   From the Trans Himalayan adventure in Royal Enfield, you will return charged of images. An opportunity for Clermont Yu to specify: "I would have many things to tell and show when I’ll be back ".     To learn more about Royal Enfield, you can go here and there          
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Perrine Chugg, traveler, mom and tramp

Lifestyle

Definitely optimistic, Perrine appeared while we were looking for a cook on the Roadsign Tour de France. "I do not cook but I can drive!" She drove and get on the team with happiness. Since then, this voracious traveler continues to learn about the world in varied lands… but not alone.   A Supersized life   Very early, Perrine wanted to escape from the daily life of a rather homebody family. At 18, she trains and begins to work as educator with children. Feeling cramped in her native Belgium, she leaves. France, South Africa, humanitarian missions in Burkina Faso and Mali … She works for Disney and spends one year in Spain for a Brittany company. And in the meantime, a 6 months stay as au pair in Great Britain which is going to widen her horizon!   It only took a single meeting in York with Joshua, a young Australian. Love at first sight and a bet that he throws before leaving: "If we do not meet again within 3 years, you come to Australia." Some e-mails then fewer contacts. In 2008, Perrine gets ready to leave for a super job in South America. The bet comes to an end and she receives a message. Impossible for her to fly away for Australia, she has just joined the Tour de France caravan … Never mind, Joshua takes the plane to France! Doesn’t that look as the beginning of a romantic comedy?           Perrine gave up the job of her dreams and quit everything for Australia. "I told myself if I crash, I return. A tricky decision but I have never regretted. " In Australia, she was able to quench her will to discover: the New South Wales and Perth on the West with a few months interlude in Belgium in 2012 for a first birth and finally, Tasmania where Joshua picks up a new job. Our globe-trotter lady adapts everywhere even if she clearly prefers life under the sun. "Tasmania, it is small and not really tropical. It is rainy, green and less warm. It looks like Europe. My husband also found there his family and my pregnancies very well passed …"   One, two then three little suns!   Between each moving, the Chugg family grew rich of three little fairies who are 5, 4 and 2 years old today. To those who wonder of these ceaseless movements in spite of the presence of young children, Perrine answers "what we lose in safety we gain in freedom". The main part for her is teaching her girls the world, the difference, the tolerance. It is what liven her up. She breaks rituals and rejects the routine. For the sharing, Perrine also became a doula who accompanies women in their pregnancy. The girls already have different characters and their mom helps them to bloom wherever they are. It needs a wonderful energy to pull, manage and satisfy all these little persons but Perrine adds "at least, we won’t regret not to have seized opportunities."       These boots are made for walking… and that’s just what they’ll do   In the proverb "Go where the moment leads you", Perrine would add "in any circumstances and rather barefoot ". But at the moment, shoes remain essential … In 2017, Joshua picked up an interesting job for an American company which led him to… Mongolia. He was spending four weeks on site and then two weeks on vacation. From May 2017 till January 2018, his "women" returned to Belgium where he joined them during his holidays. Was not it easier to live all together? The employer agreed to adapt the job and the tribe was able to gather in Ulan Bator from February 2018.   "A thermal shock, upon our arrival, it was 27 ° below! But we are favored ". Apartment, transport and fees at the international school for the elder daughter are covered. Perrine discovers with greed her new living environment. The neighborhood consists of Mongolian and expatriates and the moms share tasks and experience.       Very fast, she took a solo escapade to the Ices Festival of Khövsgöl. Listening to her, we feel that she devoured every moment of these five days during which she slept at the inhabitant's. "On the frozen lake, there are fights, races and horses. There are a lot of local crafts, jewels, clothes with pink and mauve for the dresses of the men. I was proud to wear a Del, the traditional festive dress ".   Of her meetings with her hosts and the nomads, she has already held that here, we do not refuse the food and that to apologize for having walked on the foot of somebody, we immediately have to shake hands with him. But what pleases her most is "an incredible sense of community. The notion of personal space or individuality is reduced. They speak to you a few centimeters away from the face and enter your tent without asking. The main thing is hospitality.”   Today, her elder daughter goes to school, the middle sister practices the dance and the smallest spends a lot of time outside with her mom. Perrine sees the spring arriving with delight at the idea of family strolls without caps, gloves, down jackets and boots … If the human heat is very present in Mongolia, we still perceive a light desire for tropics. "We shall see when the winter will come back, that remains open ". You are told that Perrine is a traveler and tramp…       THANKS PERRINE!
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Look Around You: watching the world eye-to-eye

Lifestyle

There are people who naturally and very seriously give the smile and create the hope. The members of the new audiovisual collective Look Around You are made of that stuff.  Spirited and highly concerned, passionate and forward looking, they form a detonative cocktail ready "to change the world". To be followed.         Travel, learn and understand the world through the picture   25-30 years. It is a gang of buddies born from carpooling and air travel meetings. It became a collective project of guys who want to highlight the diversity of the world. Valentin Proult, Jules Vervust and Marc Royer travelled, had a common vision of ground beauties and the challenges to protect them. Clément Guilloux and Apolline Decrême joined them. A patchwork of strong personalities, the heart of Look Around You, federating an international and enthusiast network.   They are 100 % adventurers and resolutely free, biologist and geographer, director, cameraman, digital consultant, editor or graphic designer. In France, in Canada and Costa Rica, each lives on his business but gives a lot to the collective with a goal exceeding the scope of a classic company. Look Around You is not that an enterprise created by some digital natives, it is a community project in the global scale. Just that!     Their method: imagine the exploration of ever handled lands or subjects. Observe the natural evolutions, melt into the scenery and live with the populations. Their main tool: the documentary. The subject is treated under three aspects: the scientific approach, the specificities of the nature, the human watch. Their aim: collect and archive the most authentic information. Share it by the image to raise awareness and imagine ways to find progressive solutions at the worldwide scale Let speak the nature by the video rather than at the bottom of a lab or in dark technical reports. Share the exploration, the discovery and the adventure with anyone and everywhere.   Valentin, however scientific he is, adds "the question is why we are there? Where is our place? To try to answer it, we have to see the world such as it is. The biggest wealth today is the discovery. Moreover, we wish to include in our movies a making of to show backstage of the expedition."     Soon on movie screens!   To reach their goal, these image makers will grasp all the opportunities. They empower themselves to travel according their envies and take risks. Kyrgyzstan, Northern Canada, Cape Verde or Peru, their first short movies will have to pass through documentary festivals to reach the next stage, television. Following the example of Luc Jaquet and his Emperor, Look Around You fancies bursting cinema screens in 5 years. Safe to say they have ambition!   They all have a personal definition of the adventure. Jules does not probably imagine it without his camera. Valentin thinks about a loss of marks and for Apolline, it is at first the uncertainty. Marc tells "It is when I take a slap which is going to change my vision of the world".     What they are the most proud (at the moment) it is the passion and the determination of every member of the collective. And also their capacity to join and create together in spite of personal routes and distances.   Freedom, taste of the adventure but also a freshness and a stunning energy, Look Around You is all that! By inviting us in the pure journey, by sharing their love of the planet and its inhabitants, they could really shake the boundaries …           Here is a teaser of the new coming documentary from Look Around You production! The team has been traveling to the canadian boreal forest looking for a scarce commodity...Enjoy the video!   For more Information about LAY Production: Their website Their Facebook Page Their Instagram
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