Theodor Rezvoy acted as Fedya in the children's movie filmed by Odessa Film Studio «Where are you, Bagira?» in 1977.
He is famous Ukrainian traveler that crossed the Atlantic Ocean alone in 2001. He returned from another travel not so long ago but already is thinking of the following: now around all «Odessas» of the world. Today Theodor revealed where the thirst for wanderings appears from and what country was the closest to him and his spirit.
Theodor, what did your thirst for wanderings begin with?
– I traveled from my early childhood, my father was a geologist and worked as the chief of mountain party. Therefore, a part of my summer passed in mountains, other part on Karolino-Bugaz. So, generally, I was surrounded by the sea and mountains. There were boats and fishing on Karolino-Bugaz and a camp life in mountains (3-4 kilometers above sea level), of course: tents, horses, steppe.
How long ago did you start to travel? Where was your first trip to?
– I made the first flight that lasted for eight months to Central Asia, to Kyrgyzstan when I was 6 years old. Since I was three years old I already rode a horse, it is clear that not by myself but with parents. Then we lived in the city of Osh, it usually gets all day long to go by the car from there to the base camp. One year we lived in one area, then the other one in another city. It was necessary already to go to the camp on horses. And it took the time from morning to evening with stops, lunches, through passes, to return from there. It was a long travel.
Do you travel by your own or with a partner or a team? What are the qualities that you appreciate the most in the satellite?
– All of the voyage across the ocean were done by my own. Speaking about the travels on the land, I travelled with the friend recently (Evgeny Stoyanov – an editor's note). There are different categories of travels: single, together, with team. I passed the ocean once alone, all other trips were alone. It is an accumulation of records, too. We had a trip by cars in 2006, we were in different crews but became friends. In 2007 he was already a navigator in my car, then I rode motorcycles with him.
We visited Crimea and went to Vladivostok on the mopeds in 2013. First of all, as for qualities: the person has to be checked. Therefore when I am asked: "Where there will be the next travel and whether it is possible to travel with you?" I understand that it is not an option, the person has to be reliable. Besides, it is necessary that the outlooks on life and sense of humour will also coincided. There are problems on any trip and if the person reacts inadequately, there are serious conflicts, it threatens the success of an expedition. There never were any problems with Zhenya. A trip to Vladivostok was the most difficult on weather conditions: constant rains, frosts, it was very tiresome but we accepted everything with humor, and no problems arose. The combination of all qualities, outlooks on life,and sense of humour are the most important.
How are you guided in places that are new for you, with the help of GPS, the card, poll of locals?
– There is a term «topographical cretinism», so talking about me is something absent. I drive to the city absolutely easily and even when GPS is switched off, I know intuitively where to curtail to the right or on the left, and I leave there where it is necessary. I do not know what it is connected with. Probably, with my first education – art. Then my profession sounded as «the teacher of drawing». I had good teachers. I liked tasks on an isometry, on spatial thinking. When tere are two projections it was necessary to draw with a third. Many could not solve them, and for me, on the contrary, it was pleasant. All tasks which are connected with visual perception were solved easily by me, unlike the exact sciences. So, I had no special difficulties in the cities and routes.
How do you choose the country (the city, the place) for another travel?
– There is no concrete principle. Even the idea about the trip to Vladivostok was born so spontaneously that we do not even know who this idea came the first to: to me or to Zhenya. We gathered quickly, prepared, found money and went. Now there is an idea to go around all Odessas. Also there is an idea to go to Mongolia on motorcycles. We think over Georgia also. However, it’s rather hard to find the sponsor. Now, there is a complexity with the money.
What country did you remember the most and why?
– We remember all the travels very often, at least, once a week. There are a lot of ridiculous and interesting things during all trips.
What are the most unusual place, tradition, living conditions that you still remember?
– On one of the first trips to England in 2000 crossing the English Channel on the ferry, I was surprised by wash basins in public toilets. There were two cranes over a sink, one with hot water, boiled water, another one with cold, ice water, so there wasn’t no mixer for water. It was possible to wash hands or hot or with cold water. The sink was closed by a stopper traditionally, they mixed water in it and washed hands. It is not hygienic even at home. Probably, every time it is necessary to wash away a sink with detergents. But they were in public toilets, and it surprised me. Or, for example, such tradition in the kitchen: the door always has to be closed automatically therefore there are «natyazhitel» of a door. And here, in Mongolia the biggest part of population does not eat fish and mushrooms. Only tourists catch fish.
Were you involved into extreme situations? Tell me about the most fascinating one, if yes.
– It is clear that there were extreme situations in all expeditions, the storms in the ocean, and the risk of accidents and meetings with wild animals or criminal elements on the land. Dangers exist always and everywhere.
What is the closest country to you, to your spirit?
– I feel comfortably everywhere. Many don’t love Germany, for the fact that there very rigid order once. But I lived about half a year in Germany and I understood that there is the high in such order. There is an accurate set of rules: if someone is able to do it, so he does it. And if you cannot do it, means, it is impossible for anybody. You can plan the life. We have pluses, more of us are free, we can make what cannot be made in Europe, even in the legislative base. There is an atmosphere In England. I remember when I went to Poland, Germans took me for the, Englishman. They also thought I was an Englishman in England. By the way, when I approached passport control at the airport in Boryspil, the professionals began to speak with me personally in English.
Where else do you like to travel?
– The number one country which I would like to visit is Japan as I am fond of a «netsuke». There is an idea to go to South America, Patagonia, Chile, Peru.
What is the «must have» to visit, in your opinion?
– There is such a phrase of «must see» – what has to be seen. There are large cities, of courses: London, Paris. Well, I think that it’s also worth to see Baikal. This unique lake contains large number of endemics (animals or plants which could be meet only in a certain area. 365 rivers and rivulets flow into it and as a result, the only one Angara River follows. However, there are many places that I haven’t visited yet… I think, it is necessary to visit Egypt and to have fun on a pole with penguins in Scandinavia.
What is the most pleasant to you in travellings?
– As our president of club of travelers told: «The coolest on a travel, to wake up in the morning and to understand that you can’t do anything else, only to go and absorb the surrounding atmosphere». There is some kind of contemplation for this purpose, if someone is inclined to philosophy.
What is your favourite season?
– Everything is pleasant, in general but I prefer summer, spring and fall. It is difficult to travel in winter.
Are you agree that people are little different after each travel?
– The person changes all the time. Even office employee is a little another tomorrow than yesterday. But traveling change the people stronger because they see more, get new experience, knowledge.
If you wouldn’t devote your life to travel, than what would you do?
– I am engaged in travels and creativity, generally. Travellings is one of the main pleasures in lives, as well as creativity. I had an acquainter once, she accurately planned her life. She followed the steps of her father as he was a doctor. And she knew when she defends the dissertation, she will go to work, etc. I planned everything literally. And I thought: there is no sense in such life. It is all the same that you’re told in all the movies, and then you will suggest to go to watch it.
It is interesting when life is unpredictable. What is the most interesting travel, when you never know how it will take place, where you will turn out, where you will be brought by the road. It would be ideal to have so much money that it would be possible to go anywhere.
Author: Anastasia Holdakovskaya
Translator: Annette Fleur de Lis