It all started with a nationwide march across 23 cities, in 2002 - in response to an epidemic of violent crimes against young Muslim women that were perpetrated by Muslim male gangs in the infamous Parisian suburbs called Cites (pronounced See-tay) - low-cost housing projects. Tithiya Sharma writes.
The greatest lesson I've learnt on this journey is to never again doubt the ability of a single inspired person to change the world. Meeting Jos Ruijs reinforced my faith further. Tithiya Sharma writes.
Aaah Amsterdam! A Mecca of pleasures and indulgences and the perfect city to head to for a little mid-trip 'rest and relaxation'.
I’ve been on the move for a half a year and the past week has been the slowest I’ve spent in all that time.
I love Paris. Even when someone steals my bag. My second morning in Paris — it was cold and raining. I was alive in the moment, blissfully aware that I was in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, nearing the end of six months of travelling solo across three continents.
He has a glimmer in his eyes. “I like working with my hands,” he says and holds up his right hand with two missing fingers.
A few weeks ago Hungary faced its most daunting ecological disaster. A reservoir at an aluminium refinery ruptured, sending a wave of toxic sludge across three counties, and into the Danube River.
In the middle of prosperous cosmopolitan Europe, I saw beggars and was warned by several locals not to give them any money and to watch my belongings when I was around them. It was the same story from Dublin to Berlin to Warsaw and now in Prague in the Czech Republic.
As I arrive in Poland, the temperature is one degree and dropping. I feel I'm turning blue and I could swear my backpack was several kilos lighter in the morning. The thirty-minute walk to my hostel feels never ending. Tithiya Sharma writes.
Ireland is a beautiful country. I would never tire of gazing at the lush green landscape. Dotted with castles with tall tales of giants and leprechauns.
Almost four months in on my trip. I’ve travelled to 14 countries and met travellers from thrice as many. My mind is full of a thousand sights and sounds and tastes.
Around the world in 54 weeks.
Destination 14: Ireland
The queue for immigration at London’s Heathrow Airport is the longest I’ve ever seen. Refugees, students, workers; nervously holding their passports and immigration forms, inching forward slowly to have their documents checked.
In 2000, Shanaka invested his life savings to put into practice a radical idea that he calls 'Lentil As Anything'. A 'pay as you feel' restaurant where anyone can walk in, eat to their hearts content, writes Tithiya Sharma.
Abandoned and abused by his parents, Ray Avery grew up in orphanages and foster homes. His story could have turned out very differently, but instead of Avery the social menace and deviant, I had just spent the morning with Ray Avery-New Zealander of the Year, 2010. Tithiya Sharma writes.