2014 Europe Ride To Remember
Sam Blumenstein  Sunday, 4 May, 2014

Both Sol Leski and I shipped our bikes to England earlier this year. The purpose of our ride from England, through many countries in Europe and then back to England was specifically to honour the memory of our families who were caught in the genocide of the Nazi perpetrated Holocaust during World War II. The journey was a very long one (8,600 kms) and often very arduous through days of heavy rain and high winds. While other days saw warm sun and more bike friendly conditions.

The most difficulty we encountered however was not the physical demands placed on us by a tight schedule, long distances and often nasty weather. More difficult was the emotional pain of finding the places our families used to call home. Visits to Treblinka, Majdanek and Auschwitz death camps where we were able to say Kadish for all the victims. As well as this many other landmarks memorialising the sacrifices of both World War I and World War II soldiers who liberated Europe from the planned thousand year Reich. Specifically, we saw this at the Normandy D-Day landing beaches, Villers Bretoneuxx and Poziers battle fields in France.

Unfortunately after all the events of the past Europe today is no better in the anti semitic, anti Israel sentiment than it was back in the 1930's. It appears we really are the "chosen" people.

On a more positive note, we enjoyed some wonderful riding in the Austrian Alps, northern Italian Alps and mountain road areas in south east France. On returning to England we were treated to the hospitality of our English YOB (Yids On Bikes) bike club who took us riding in the English countryside and treated us wonderfully.