Julien Brulard is a French judoka on a special mission. He travels around the world from dojo to dojo. His dream is to visit all 197 countries without using any aeroplanes and without going to hotels.
In a special interview for Boec.com Brulard explains more about his incredible journey.
HERE you can check all his social media channels.
We met him in Sofia, Bulgaria, at the European judo championships among men and women.
“I have been walking in Sofia and it is beautiful here. People I have met so far are nice. Some judokas invited me to their clubs – Ivailo Ivanov and Bozhidar Temelkov, who trains in Sliven (city in Bulgaria). I’ll go over there.”
View this post on Instagram
“Ten years ago I wanted to go to 4 major countries of judo to improve myself – Japan, Russia, Brazil and Georgia or Korea. I went to Japan and somehow fell in love with the country and lived there 3 years, instead of 3 months. My coach there was travelling to France all the time. He moved from dojo to dojo, coaching the athletes. In the same time I started visiting nearby places and everywhere it was all the same “Oh, you are judoka? Come train with us. After that we can spend some time, go to a party and have fun. If you want, you can sleep over. It was like that all the time.”
This is just the beginning.
“I came back to France after and came up with the idea to go on a world tour, maybe 80 countries. I started to do all of it, but with some rules – you don’t fly, because of the ecology. No hotels, because you must not be like tourist. Then I started to look for some sponsors.”
But what are the challenges?
“It is really hard, because of the injuries. This is the biggest problem for me. I had problems with 3 different injuries and maybe the next would be the end of my journey. That’s why I am very careful.”
“In Finland I arrived in a small city and a journalist did an interview with me for the newspaper so everyone over there knew about me. I had no wi-fi, so had to go every night to the local bar to post my journals and etc. One night I’ve done my job and left the bar at 1 am, but two big guys stopped me. They wanted to drive me back home with a car, but they were drunk. I was like “No, thanks”, but they kept chasing me and told me to go with them to sleep at their place. Then they started to be aggressive, the one guy was in front of me, the next behind. I ran back to the bar and called the security.”
“I think the Balkan countries are really nice. Actually, I gained 7 kg for two months since I’m her. People welcome me and invite me all day “Please, eat!”. I was invited everywhere, I gained so much weight in Macedonia!”.
What are the next steps?
“I have been in 19 countries. Now I’ll stay in Bulgaria for a while to rest, because I was on the move for the last couple of months. After that I’m going to Turkey – Istanbul, Antalya, Izmir. Then I’ll work at the border with refugees. Then it is time for Asia – Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Mongolia, China.”
“The last part is going to be expensive so I need to make this a job official. There are more complicated countries like North Korea.”