Posts by: Pontus

I got 99 problems, and two cars is one.

Screen Shot 2012-11-09 at 11.48.30 AM

Cars cars cars.

Working hard, oh so hard, to get us the two cars we need to do this god forsaken but truly amazing rally. We’ve talked to Mini/BMW about sponsoring us, but we’ve yet to hear back from them about the final judgement. Fingers crossed tho, super crossed! :) I even made a beta version of the start page for this site, which will be used as start page if we get a car sponsorship, to utilise the space 110% and make the sponsor/s really show (with borrowed code from Adidas). Almost looks like it was a campaign site for a car.

We have been around and about, looking at backup cars, and it is looking like a bright future if the sponsorship falls through … but we hope it doesn’t have to go to that :)

Have a nice weekend people, and take care of each other.

Meeting number Two, and the smell of an un-route seen before.

planning(My map and drawings, trying to explain the route to my team mates)

So, meeting number two has been dealt with. It was held on the 52nd floor of the turning torso, and it was amazing. Well, except for the gas we all got from eating a really sketchy pizza before the meeting, so the place was not odor-less™.

We started out with me, drawing and talking about what un-route we are going to take, what dates, and how long the diferent stages takes. Since I’ve been using google maps a lot, none of the dates will actually be accurate, and the distances will probably take twice as long as expected, but hey, we have a route at least. Start at the 14th from Klenova Castle, and make it to the Mongolian border before 2’nd of August … those are the two main dates we have to stick to.

Second thing on the agenda was taking pictures of each team member in the outfit we’ve bought for the rally. Will post pictures here … one at a time.

We also tried out some freeze dried food, which will be used as back up food on the trip. I will post movie shot/s of that later :)

Then we went thru the status on the cars, and the new deadline is now “by the end of November”, since we’re waiting to hear from a sponsor that (*fingers crossed*) might be able to help us out with the cars. Giving them a little while longer to get back to us, and if that falls through, we will start organising the buying of the cars, since time is running out on this part of the project.

Wondering why? Well, first, it’s a matter of showing potential backers that we’re dedicated about doing this. And second, we need to have this ready before January when most companies plan their 2013 budgets for advertising, and well, we want to be in that budget. As soon as we have the cars, the fundraising can start for real. For realz™. For sure.

It was a good meeting, and we stayed a bit after the meeting was over, just chatting and messing around. The group is getting to know each other better and better, and everyone is slowly realising that this will be awesome. Truly awesome.

Fundraiser via Indiegogo.com

crowdfunding-1

So, I’m working on a crowd funding thing over at indiegogo.com in order to get some more cash for the rally, and the charities. Right now, I’m doing the video for the project (GoPro + After effect + my wicked accent and mumbling ftw!).

We need your input
In order to give you all something for the support, we’re trying to come up with perks that will make you as happy as us.

So, please please please, let us know if you have any cool ideas on perks that we could offer in exchange for support, we’re up almost anything.

What we’ve got s far
So far, the perks look a little like this:

“I just want to be nice”-perk
Your name will be added to our website’s thank you list. And hopefully you’ll be able to sleep a little bit better at night knowing you’d helped a good cause, and some awesome people to make the journey of a life time.

You will be seen!
If you honour us with this, we’ll put a sticker with your name on the car. The car will get massive media exposure all over the world, we hope, so you might be on TV in Kazakhstan! Who knows!? Awesome!!! We will have a space on the car with all the names shown in an awesome way.

Official Team Venture Shirt
You will receive the official Team Venture t-shirt … and of course our sincere gratitudes! You will look more awesome than Shaft. And that’s pretty damn awesome if you ask wikipedia.

Your logo on the car
Yes, if your company want to be associated with this amazing adventure, you have the chance to put your company’s logo on the car, for a small fee you get to put a sticker on the car (10x10cm).

Postcard from ????
We will send you a handwritten postcard from somewhere exotic, like Turkmenistan.. or something awesome like that.

Drawn as a little gamer
We will draw you as a little gamers character (from http://www.little-gamers.com ) and use you in a comic of our choosing. This might be good, or it might be bad, no one knows. We will also send you the character as a high resolution PNG, so that you can go buck wild and use it EVERYWHERE. … and of course you will get our sincere gratitudes!

Limited Edition Travel Book
In addition to inclusion on the website thank you list, you will receive a 9” x 7” limited edition soft cover trade book containing all the amazing photos we’ll be taking during the trip along with nice little notes and other things that can be crammed into a book. You will also receive our sincere gratitudes.

Limited Edition Travel Book
In addition to inclusion on the website thank you list, you will receive a 9” x 7” limited edition hard cover book containing all the amazing photos we’ll be taking during the trip along with nice little notes and other things that can be crammed into a book. Signed and numbered by the entire crew. You will also receive our sincere gratitudes.

Recurring Little Gamer
We will draw you as a little gamers character (from http://www.little-gamers.com ) and make you a reoccurring character in the comic. This might be good, or it might be bad, no one knows. We will also send you the character as a high resolution PNG, so that you can go buck wild and use it EVERYWHERE. … and of course you will get our sincere gratitudes!

Local Laws and Customs, Part 1

Well, might as well share all the things I write down in my notebook about the countries we’re going to visit while driving the mongol rally 2013. Here’s part 1. More parts to come, I’m sure. Enjoy! :)

 

TURKMENISTANFlag_of_Turkmenistan.svg

  • Possession and use of drugs is illegal and, if found guilty, you could face a lengthy prison sentence in very basic conditions.
  • Male homosexual activity is illegal, punishable by a custodial sentence. Homosexuality is still very much frowned upon socially. You should take care over public displays of affection.
  • There remain sensitivities around relationships between foreign men and local women, and the Turkmen authorities are known to take action against both. For foreign nationals this could result in a fine or deportation from the county.
  • Photography of many official buildings is forbidden. You should check before taking photographs near potentially sensitive sites such as airports, military barracks, police stations, government buildings, embassies and the Presidential Palace. It is best to check with the nearest policeman if it is possible to take photographs.
  • It is also against the law to smoke outside and if caught you could be fined.

 

UZBEKISTAN500px-Flag_of_Uzbekistan.svg

  • Seatbelts for drivers and passengers are compulsory and the use of mobile phones while driving is prohibited.
  • You drive on the right in Uzbekistan. Be aware that vehicles approaching a roundabout have the right of way over vehicles already on the roundabout.
  • We recommend that you carry a photocopy of your passport at all times. Requests to produce an ID, for example by the police, are frequent.
  • Possession of drugs is illegal. There is a ban on the sale of alcohol and tobacco to those under 20. Prison sentences can be lengthy. While prison conditions have reportedly improved, reports of widespread hepatitis and tuberculosis and allegations of mistreatment of some prisoners by officials remain a source of concern.
  • You should carry a doctor’s prescription if you intend to travel with prescription medicine and declare the items on your Customs Declaration Form. Possession of such items, even with a doctor’s prescription could, if not declared, or if the quantity held exceeds legal limits, lead to administrative or even criminal proceedings.
  • Homosexuality is illegal under Uzbek law and is still very much frowned upon socially. You should take care over public displays of affection.
  • You should be aware that any form of photography can upset the authorities, particularly photographs of government buildings including the Palace of Forums in Tashkent. You should check before using a camera, especially near airports, border checkpoints, military barracks, bridges, police stations and metro stations.
  • You must register within three days of arrival. If you are staying in a hotel, you will be asked for your passport at check-in and it will be retained for a short period. Hotel staff will complete the registration paperwork and return your passport to you.
  • If staying in a private house, your host should register you with their local district OVIR (Department of Foreign Travel & Exit (they also deal with the registration of Foreign Citizens)). If you travel to another city and plan to stay for longer than three days, you will need to register again. You must follow this procedure, as a full record of your whereabouts whilst in Uzbekistan is required upon departure. Visitors who are unable to account for their whereabouts could be fined and possibly deported.

 

KAZAKHSTAN600px-Flag_of_Kazakhstan.svg

  • Service stations and petrol/water access can be limited outside the main cities
  • Local Traffic Police only have the right to stop vehicles if an offence has been committed.  Travellers should note that a Traffic Police Official should start immediately to complete official papers relating to any alleged offence.
  • Kazakhstan has a secular constitution. You should respect local traditions, customs, laws and religions at all times and be aware of your actions to ensure that they do not offend other cultures or religious beliefs.
  • Possession and use of drugs is illegal and, if found guilty, you could face a lengthy prison sentence in basic conditions.
  • Although homosexuality is not illegal, it is often not tolerated, especially outside the major cities.
  • Local regulations require you to carry photo ID at all times.
  • Some restrictions exist on photography near military establishments, border areas and some official buildings. Notices about these restrictions are sometimes, but not always, indicated so some caution is advised. Travellers should also be aware that photography of airport facilities is prohibited.
  • You should bring enough cash for your trip. Travellers’ cheques are not normally accepted. US$ are the most widely accepted foreign currency. ATM’s are now available in most towns, but do not always accept foreign credit or debit cards. If you are bringing more than 3,000US$ into Kazakhstan you should declare these amounts on arrival into the country and when exiting.

 

MONGOLIAFlag_of_Mongolia.svg

  • Driving in Mongolia can be hazardous. There are few all-weather roads anywhere outside major towns. You should ensure your vehicle is suitably equipped for the terrain and you have appropriate supplies and communication equipment.
  • Driving standards have largely not kept pace with the dramatic growth in the number of vehicles in Mongolia and are highly variable. Vehicle maintenance in Mongolia can be poor, even for rental vehicles.
  • Driver and passengers should take sensible precautions including wearing seat belts where possible and avoiding driving at night.
  • We advise that you use an experienced, professional driver familiar with the driving conditions. Driving in Ulaanbaatar is also hazardous as roads are heavily congested, minimally signposted and there are a high number of accidents. (HAH!)
  • Possession and use of drugs is illegal and if found guilty you could face a long prison sentence in an institution with very basic facilities.
  • Although not illegal, homosexuality is a subject many Mongolians are uncomfortable with. Some Mongolian men are unhappy to see Mongolian women in relationships with foreign men. In both cases it is sensible to be discreet to avoid causing offence.
  • Though many Mongolians are familiar with foreign visitors, you should be aware of local customs, especially if visiting remote areas or calling on a Mongolian family. Stepping on a door threshold or wearing short sleeves for example can cause offence.
  • Remember to show appropriate respect in Buddhist monasteries: ask permission before taking photographs, and do not touch any sacred images or objects.

Change, but for a better world.

Just got news from the adventurists (the guys organising the mongol rally) has changed the mandatory charity for this year. Instead of Lotus Children’s Centre Charitable Trust, it’s now Cool Earth. And to quote one of the adventurists ..

“We’re changing direction a bit this year, instead of saving the world a little bit at a time we’re going to save the whole thing in one go. We’ll still have local charities we recommend, but our main effort will be Cool Earth.”

We’re still going to support SOS Childrens Villages (SOS Barnbyar) 100%, and will try to raise as much money for them as possible.

Anyways, now you know.. time for me to update all sites and links and PDFs and such.

Freeze dried, but hopefully tasty on the road to Mongolia!

mountainhouse

Just ordered a couple of Mountain House Freeze Dried Meals from the internets, will be back later with a video report on how good, or bad, they are.

In other news, we got a nice email from SOS Barnbyar asking us to put a pin in the collection for their mongolian branch until after new years, and also we need to raise at least 20 000 Sek in order for them to be able to ear mark the money for Mongolia.

We’re fine with both these demands from them, since it means the money will end up exactly where we want them to.

So, the Charity drive for SOS Barnbyar has been put on hold for a little while. But we’ll be back with more info when it is time! :)

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