The name Pedro is derived from the Greek Latin word ‘petra’. It means ‘rock’. After reading the story of 43-year-old Pedro Bento from Pochurgal, you may think, ‘This man is like a name – strong and brave.’ In 2016, Pedro first came to Nepal for a mountain bike race called ‘Yak Attack’.
In that race, he not only traveled up to 5416 meters above sea level but also helped the victims of the 2015 earthquake in Nepal. Before coming here, he had raised money for assistance. He handed over the money to the earthquake victims at Camp Hope. After spending some time in the camp, he developed close ties with Nepal and its people. He was impressed when the people here treated the foreigners as their own.
The very next year, Pedro had a tragic accident when he returned to Portugal with that love and respect. At that time he used to do mountain bike and motorcycle races in Portugal. He himself was practicing to participate in a motorbike race. But the speed of his bike slowed down, he fought badly. Nine ribs and a broken arm were broken.
The doctor had told him, ‘You can no longer participate in any sporting activity for the rest of your life. You can’t even walk again. ” The news frightened Pedro, but he did not panic. Because he kept the word ‘defeat’ away from the dictionary of life.
The accident left Pedro in a wheelchair. At that time many things started playing in his mind. He realized, ‘We are not the ones facing the problem. In that case, we need someone’s help. ‘And he was determined,’ If I recover, I will help as many people as I need. ‘
With the same determination, he decided to take a two-week wheelchair rest. But the doctors kept telling him, ‘You can’t get well.’ Despite doctors’ warnings, he would try to get out of bed at night. Not only did he get up, but he also exercised and tried to ride a bicycle. Fight, get up again.
After continuous practice, he was able to cycle again in three months. The doctors were upset. He had two steel rods and stitches on his back. After 7-8 months of recovery, he thought that he should be taken out of there. The doctors said again, “If you take it out, it will hurt you.”
This time again Pedro was stubborn. Within nine months of the accident, he was released. It took six months for her wounds and bones to heal. Unable to recover, he went on a mountain bike race. The doctors were shocked to see him again.
“Doctors have been wrong about me so far,” he said, referring to a visit to a Kathmandu guest house last week. I fulfilled that commitment in 2019. ‘
In 2019, Pedro came to Nepal from Portugal in 72 days on a mountain bike. On April 1, 2019, he started cycling from Portugal. From there, he traveled to 15 countries, including Spain, France, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia, Montenegro, Monte Carlo, Albania, Turkey, and Iran. Fearing to go to Pakistan and Afghanistan for security reasons, he boarded an Indian ship directly from Tehran.
He rested in Tehran during the trip, only one day. “I had a very busy schedule,” he said. “I worked as a physical education teacher in Portugal. By working even when I was sick, I saved time for this trip. The governor had given me 81 days’ leave. That’s why I was in a hurry to finish the journey on time. But I was able to complete the journey ahead of time. ‘
During the ten thousand kilometers journey from Portugal to Nepal, he also carried the necessary materials along with his bicycle. Sometimes he cycled 60 kilometers and sometimes 255 kilometers. Sometimes you had to carry a bicycle, sometimes you had to ride, sometimes you had to make it, sometimes you had to fly in a plane with yourself.
He was determined to raise 12,000 euros through this challenging and interesting journey. Which he wanted to help Nepal’s children and people in trouble.
Through ‘Dreams of Project’, he helped teach two children he knew at Camp Hope, Mingmar Sherpa, and Tenzing Sherpa. He is currently studying at Mount Kailash School. He also donates to the Rainbow Volunteer Club.
After the trip from Portugal to Nepal, many asked Pedro to tell them about the trip. How many people to tell? Just what So he wrote the book, ‘Ten Thousand Kilometers – Seventy to Days on a Bike’.
“The name of the book is not very fast but people like it,” he said with a laugh.
Pedro’s adventurous journey and support for Nepalis are not so limited. Sometimes he races in Portugal or sells copies and sends money to Nepal. He also came to Nepal in the same month. He had set a goal to reach Everest Base Camp on a mountain bike from Kathmandu Guest House on December 20.
It took him 11 days to reach the base camp. On the last night of the journey, he reached Gorakshep at an altitude of 5,000 meters. In Portugal, the mountain is only 2,351 meters high. Growing up in that environment, he was overwhelmed by the heights here.
Pedro was very weak. Her oxygen level had dropped to 61 percent. In that case, it is better to go down than to go up. But Pedro is stubborn. When he woke up the next day, he was a little better. What do you want I drank garlic soup and hot water and started sucking the chocolate in my pocket.
“It simply came to our notice then. But it made sense to go that way, ‘he smiled. Pedro, who disobeyed the doctor and overcame his own physical weakness, seems like a great man with adventure. ‘Have you ever felt like that?’ He laughed out loud when asked this question. And stopped. He smiled again and said, “I never thought of that. I just follow my desires. If I can help someone, I will try my best. That gives me self-satisfaction. ‘
Pedro, who initially played football, quit football at the age of 18 and started racing mountain bikes and motorcycles. He wants to be in ten of the toughest mountain bike races in the world. Seven countries have played – Costa Rica, Chile, Canada, Italy, Australia, Mongolia, and Nepal.
About the reasons for being attracted to mountain bikes and motorcycles, he says, ‘You can come to the same place every day on a bike but always find different. Sometimes it is a stone, sometimes it is a ditch. Sometimes it is raining and sometimes it is sunny. That’s what lured me. Besides, we can go anywhere on mountain bikes. I have traveled around Nepal and the world on my bike which is a very different experience. ‘
Pedro, who has visited Nepal three times, has reached Chitwan, Pokhara, Thorangla Pass, and other places on his mountain bike. Returning to Portugal from Nepal last Wednesday, he would like to return to Nepal.
‘I like the culture of Nepal very much. It has a good landscape. There are mountains, forests, plains, rivers. And best of all, there are people here who show love and affection. That is why I like Nepal, ‘he said.