Desh Sanchar Chautari- EP 32

A man who dares to live a dream (Video)

Pushkar Shah holds the record of travelling over 150 countries in his bicycle and pedaling 220 thousand kilometers in the process. His 11-year journey started from his hometown in Dolkha in 1998. Upon return, he scaled Mt. Everest, world’s highest peak, in 2010 hoisting flags of the countries he had touched, to mark a sort of end of his adventure cum passion.

An advocate for the Cycle Cities Campaign in Nepal, he has been sharing his stories and insights to motivate people to cycle ever since his return. A true adventurer, Shah, appeared as a guest at Desh Sanchar Chautari and shared stories about his adventures in his unique onomatopoeically vivacious style.

“All I had was 100 Rupees my mother had given me as I began my campaign with an urge to see the world,” he recalls, “what’s more, I did not even have a bicycle when I announced my desire.” Upon hearing of his wish from news outlets, actress Sharmila Malla presented him with a bicycle, and he set out on his journey.

Shah had never cycled outside of Kathmandu before his embarkation. “One needs to be resolute when chasing a dream,” he stresses. He extends gratitude for favours he received all along. “The secret of my journey’s success was the support I received from all the genuine people I came across daily.” All he carried with him was the basics –tent, sleeping bag, and a portable mattress – and depended on good Samaritans along the way for the rest, including food and water.

There were occasions when he was on the verge of being shot point blank, ‘but I was able to put the death behind.’ However, acknowledges that what he experienced and was rewarded with, far outweighed a few hostile incidents.

The journey was not always smooth. Shah had to peddle for days on an empty stomach and for different reasons. There were times he did not come across anyone altruistic to feed him either through lack or luck or barrier in communication. There were other times when he had to go hungry stomach even though he had money on him.

Based on what he has seen, he finds Nepal to be the most beautiful country in the world. “It’s not just because it is my motherland but because it is unparalleled in terms of cultural and topographic variations yet offering pleasant weather year-round,” he explains, “having said that, Norway and Switzerland are second in my list.”