We crossed the border from Turkey into Bulgaria around noon. Over two hundred eighteen-wheelers were lined up, waiting to get across the border. We rode right past them and right into Bulgaria, headed for a picturesque, medieval town called Veliko Tarnovo. The only problem was finding the damn place. The Cyrillic highway signs with the backwards C's and E's didn't help at all. Then there's the Bulgarian Police,standing on the side of the road, waving little red pingpong paddles, signalling our group of speeders to pull over. Twice this happens and twice Paolo gets us out of the jam. I don't know how he does it. From what I could see, he uses a little Italian, a pinch of muscle, and a lot of charm. It works so good that the officers forget about the speeding ticket and commence to give Paolo directions. We finally stop for an afternoon coffee break (photo above, that's Paolo), get our bearings, and blast off again. We ride faster than I have ever ridden in my life. Little did I know that this was the norm for this bunch of riders in this rural land.