1 woman, 1 motorcycle, 1 world trip

Benka Pulko, photo: Borut Cvetko, www.benkapulko.com

2000 Days´, 75 Countries, 7 Continents, and 2 Guinness World Records - It all adds up to one incredible trip for Slovene-born Benka Pulko. She has ridden a motorcycle more than 180,000 kilometres, setting the world record for the longest solo motorcycle journey by a woman, in both distance and duration - travelling around the world and on all seven continents. Ksenija Samardzija-Matul of Radio Slovenia caught up with Benka while she was promoting a book about her travels

When Benka Pulko, a biology teacher and nurse, turned thirty, she decided to change her life and started organising her ride on a motorcycle around the globe. In 1997, Benka Pulko set off from her hometown of Ptuj and she returned home in 2002. During the promotion tour of her book describing her trip, we had the opportunity to speak to her:

"It was basically meeting people - all the differences - how similar life is - we basically live, no matter that if we are yellow or brown or white, either we are blonde, believe in this or that God, I think we are all basically the same; we are all going from birth to death trying to be happy."

You probably met all kinds of people, who really impressed on you?

" I met some ambassadors, they were extremely smart people, well educated. I love those ladies - I met them in South Africa - being my age, having 12 kids living for family, I thought they were amazing - they deserve respect as human beings - someone who dedicates their lives completely to somebody different. They were indeed the travellers that I was meeting, they were coming from different parts of the world, travelling for all kinds of different reasons, that was very interesting for me too."

What did you learn about yourself during the trip?

"Knowing about the spin of this planet. What it's all about. Is life worth it? Here, there, what to do. You know what is worse, being gone in the short life that we have available. Seeing what the values are, how they are different, basically from this side of the world and let's say in some other continents. It was a huge learning session this whole trip, 5 ½ years or 2000 days, it was definitely worth going into this school, I even think that it was worth more than some educational process in the university."