About the Travel
We started the trip as The Nashville Sprockets performing a show with Coreen Hartley,stilt walker and country singer. Pascal Cornier, a French engineer, joined us in Italy with his dog Cartouche. They were part of the group until Goa, India.
Aaaaah… Italy, good weather, great food, generous people.
Julien was mistaken for an Albanian (!?) in Crete and was arrested and beaten up by two dreadful policemen. When we finally found him, his face was ashen, his shirt was torn and he was shaking with fear. Despite us presenting his passport, they still kept him overnight and threated to lock us up. Beware of Greece, we won’t be back.
In Olympos, Turkey, we were invited to stay at Kadir’s Top Tree House. We liked it so much, we stayed and stayed and stayed…. After 6 weeks of performing and saving money, it was time to hit the road again.
With us came 4 passengers to help with the finances. John and Jayson left us in Bam, Iran. Kate hoped out in Delhi, India and Billy came all the way to Goa, India.
After the excessive heat and overwhelming crowds of India, Nepal was a relief.
We were the first Western circus to take our show in our rucksacks and perform to the villages along the Anapurna trek in Nepal.
Whilst working with children on a holiday camp, 18 km from the Tibetan border, we met Sandji, principal of The British School. She invited us back to her school in Katmandu, where for three months we taught the children circus skills and helped the year 6 to put on their own production.
Theo had Malaria in Calcutta and Scott in Bangladesh.
In Bangladesh, living in the bus was rendered impossible by the heat, the mosquitoes and the overwhelming crowd. We were lucky to meet the Whitlesey family who put us up in their house for over 3 months whilst we were trying to organise a boat for Singapore. They turned a nightmare into a fun, enjoyable and unforgettable moment of this trip.
The Millennium didn’t really happen for us as we were stuck in Bangladesh where the official year was 1406.
We performed the same show for the richest and the poorest (i.e.: The Sultan of Brunei and the street kids of Calcutta and Bangladesh).
We couldn’t save money in Thailand so we flew from Bangkok to Japan where we performed for 2 months.
In Australia & New Zealand
Working for the Festival of Darwin was the high point of the Australian tour… run of course by an Italian, Fabulous Fabrizio (as we call him).
Most of the people of Queensland were perhaps the meanest and least receptive of this trip…
Whilst we tend to generalise about the people of countries and regions, it is the individuals whom we met that made this trip possible. In Queensland we met Heidi who put a smile on our faces and is the creator of this website.
Returning to New South Wales, the Australian tour ended abruptly when we met Scott Bordie and Jerry Furnace, rangers of Byron bay shire. They reported us to the Immigration for entertaining hundreds of families in front of the bus whilst being holders of a tourist visa…
Thank you for sending us to a better place, New-Zealand was a totally different matter. The Immigration proved less heartless. They thought our story interesting enough to give us a one year working visa.
After Asia and the misfortunes of Australia, the friendly people and the green countryside of NZ has invigorated us. Recharged, we are now full of hope and excitement for the rest of the NZ tour and the other half of the world tour.
We were flown to Dubai for the 10 weeks Summer Surprises Festival, by Sid and Max of Circus Works, whilst Theo enjoyed his stay in NZ with Julien, where he started learning how to read at the Takaka Primary school in Golden Bay.
Julien fell in love for New Zealand and decided to leave the Sprockets to continue his work as a sculpteur.
It was the generosity of the people in New Zealand that enabled us to go to South America and meet Patogiro, Mauricio and Felipe with whom our life has certainly taken off in a new direction.
In South America…
In Chile, we were amazed by the thousands of talented jugglers, acrobats and aerial artists busking at traffic lights.
It is in Valpairaiso, Chile, that we met up with Mauricio and Felipe. Together we exchanged skills and ideas and work on a new show incorporating Aerial skills. It is with this new fun group (and family) that we toured South America.
In Peru,173 km North of Lima, we unfortunatly met the most talented bunch of thieves on the trip to date. They liberated us of the 3 Deutch bykes that we had from the beginning of this trip, Theo’s BMX and every bycicle wheels not chained up. They were so quiet that also we were sleeping inches away in the bus,we didn’t hear a sound.
In Quito, Ecuador, We met Ariel Tozi who was fantastic at helping us getting contracts and finding a school for Theo.
Colombia, the world’s most beautifull country with the world worst press.
Cali, Colombia, we encoutered “Circo para todos”, a social circus school, who provided us with a place to park the bus and to train and amazed us by their high skills.
It is in “Circo para todos” that we left the bus while we went touring Brazil (The Amazone), Uruguay and Argentina.
Whiles back in Chile to pass their driving test, Mauricio and Felipe met up with Royal de Luxe, a French theatre company and were invited to join them for a few months. A few month that might turn out to be much more as Mauricio will soon be a proud dad with Karine, member of Royal de Luxe.
In Chichiriviche, Venezuela, Julio a small bundle of a street dog of about one month old adopted us and join the travel. It took us days of queuing in offices in Caracas to get all the papers work for Julio the dog, to leave Venezuela.
We couldn’t find a boat crossing from Caracas to Panama at a decent price.
We finally crossed from Caracas to Guatemala and so It was with delight that Scott, Theo, Julio and me arrived in Guatemala to discover a new continent.
In Santo Tomas de Castillo, Jo Bertrandon, Theo’s new school teatcher joined us and together with the CNED (French home schooling), he is doing a great job.